Paul Hodgkinson 1958-2012
Socialist Action expresses its great sorrow at the loss of Paul Hodgkinson, who died on Monday 2 April after fighting cancer.
We wish to extend our condolences to Paul’s family.
Paul was a long time supporter of Socialist Action. His commitment to the liberation of humanity lay at the core of his socialism.
Paul’s sharp intellect and unwavering socialist principles were of great value in many struggles. Throughout his adult life Paul was to be found at the centre of the action, whether as a member of Youth CND, in the Miners’ Strike, opposing imperialist intervention in Central America, Yugoslavia and Iraq, or more recently defending multicultural society against the advance of racism and fascism.
In his adopted city of Bradford he used his significant skills and experience to take a leading role in the establishment and activities of the city’s Unite Against Fascism branch.
Despite his increasing ill health he threw himself into the campaign in August 2010 to oppose the EDL in Bradford. As one of the founders of ‘We Are Bradford’ he played a critical part in uniting people from many communities to celebrate and defend multicultural society.
Paul’s well judged insights and calm focus were always a great asset to all those who worked with him. He also made a big contribution as a highly effective speaker at public meetings.
Paul was an important source of guidance for a new generation of socialists and anti-racist campaigners at Bradford University Students’ Union.
Paul was always an internationalist in spirit, outlook and in action.
Paul had a particular quality: he engaged with the fight for political and social progress in a period when there were major reverses. Paul’s determination during difficult times significantly helped lay the basis for future advance. He was very happy to live to see the renewed progress in the fight for social justice, in places like Venezuela and more recently in Europe.
‘Hodge’, as he was affectionately known, was highly respected as a comrade and friend. His selfless devotion to the cause, astute sense of judgement and calm focus will be deeply missed.
Paul’s funeral will be on:
Rawdon LS19 6JP
Donations should be made to Cancer Research UK
Tribute from Mukhtar Ali, Chair Bradford Unite Against Fascism
‘Paul was a dear friend. He held his principles in equality and fairness very strongly and firmly.
All the time I have known him he was there when there was anything to do about racism and the suffering of workers.
I will never forget that even though I left the Labour Party he would ring me up and ask about certain issues.
When the EDL was planning to come to Bradford he phoned me and asked if I knew – I said no. He asked me what should we do? He wanted to know if other members of the community would do anything. Everything started from that.
Paul was very inclusive. His work will be a great legacy for Bradford.’
Tribute to Paul by Ashiq Hussain, Chair, ‘We Are Bradford’
‘I first met Paul in 2010 after I contacted Unite Against Fascism about the EDL coming to Bradford. Out of that meeting developed “We Are Bradford”, which brought together trade unionists, people of faith and many others. Paul was astonishing.
He had a real feeling and heart for the work. He believed in standing up to fascist groups like the BNP and the EDL.
He had massive will power and energy. He became a close friend and colleague. He gave me constant encouragement and support.
It is hard to find people like Paul. His death is a great loss to Bradford and to the country.’