Farewell to former Gazette boss with love for community

Bill Hopper
Bill Hopper

A former manager of the Northumberland Gazette, who devoted his time to community life, has died, aged 82.

William Henry Carlton Hopper, known as Bill, passed away at The Berkshire Nursing Home in Wokingham on February 12.

He leaves behind children Jane, 48, and Richard, 44.

Bill was born on January 8, 1931, in Stockton-on-Tees.

He did National Service at Catterick in the Army before going to Downing College, Cambridge University,to read law.

Bill married Anne in 1958 and they lived and worked in Darlington. He was involved with newspapers and the family moved to York and Bath before arriving in Alnwick in 1966. Bill served as manager of the Gazette until 1982 and was also involved with starting the Morpeth Gazette.

During his time in Alnwick, he was involved with various clubs, organisations and charities. He was one of the first to be involved with Alnwick Fair and was a member of the Round Table and Rotary Club.

After leaving the paper, he served as town clerk, before moving to Saudi Arabia in 1983, but after a short stint abroad he returned to England and became project manager at Cragside, before retiring in 1994. In retirement, keen angler Bill had a part-time job at the House of Hardy shop in Alnwick. He also acted as chairman of the house committee for Alnwick’s Abbeyfield Extra Care Home until 2011.

Bill and Anne celebrated their ruby wedding anniversary by having a trip around the world in 1998. Anne died in 2003.

Bill moved in with family in 2011 when he became unwell with pulmonary fibrosis and later moved to the Wokingham-based nursing home.

His funeral is on March 1 at 10.30am at Easthampstead Park Crematorium, Wokingham.