Family and friends remember Former Lord Mayor of Portsmouth who has passed away

SERVICE Jim Lodge, who was Lord Mayor of Portsmouth in 1987, gave years of service to the community
SERVICE Jim Lodge, who was Lord Mayor of Portsmouth in 1987, gave years of service to the community
Picture: Isle of Wight Radio/PA Wire

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TRIBUTES have been paid to a former Lord Mayor of Portsmouth and well known newsagent who died from a heart condition.

After serving his city as a councillor for 14 years and becoming the city’s Lord Mayor, Jim Lodge has passed away aged 85.

He will be fondly remembered by those who knew him, especially for his passion for Portsmouth.

But Mr Lodge had achieved many other feats before taking on the prominent title of Lord Mayor.

At the age of 15 – having lied about his age in a bid to fight for his country during the Second World War – he joined the Royal Navy.

He served on-board HMS Diadem during her convoys to Russia in the war and went on to become a manager in the Navy, Army and Air Force Institutes (NAAFI) after the war ended.

Mr Lodge then completed a stint as a diver on a minesweeper patrolling the English Channel, before signing up to the army when the Korean War broke out.

Having served in the forces for over a decade, he decided to turn his hand to a career path he was first introduced to as a boy.

Mr Lodge opened his own newsagents – following in the footsteps of his father who he used to help deliver papers.

He ran his store on Halstead Road, Wymering, for five years before moving the shop to Milton Road, Milton, where it remained for 19 years until he retired in 1986.

A love for the city and the people who lived in it saw the father-of-five elected onto the council in 1973 – a role he took on while managing the shop.

One of his sons, John Lodge, 57, of Eastwook Road, Hilsea, said: ‘Dad was really passionate about Portsmouth.

‘He loved it and wanted it to be a nice place for people to live in and visit.

‘He really wanted to make a difference and made sure that every decision he made as a councillor was right for the city.

‘Everywhere he went he would encourage people to visit Portsmouth – he was a real ambassador for the place and was proud to serve it.’

After 13 years as a councillor, Mr Logde was then elected as Lord Mayor of Portsmouth in 1987.

During his year as mayor one of his fondest memories was the moment he welcomed the Queen to the city and hosted a large ceremony for her.

One of his daughters Sandra Paterson, 64, of Marine court, Southsea, said: ‘He was very much a Royalist, so it meant a lot to him to meet the Queen – as did everything he did when he was Lord Mayor.

‘He particularly enjoyed meeting people and interacting with the community.

‘It was a lot of hard work, but he felt honoured to represent the city he loved so much.’

Since retiring Mr Lodge took up gardening at his home on South Road, Drayton, and spent a lot of time with his family.

James Lodge

Born: 30 July 1926

Died: 4 November 2011