A former history teacher, who served on Adur District Council for many years, enjoyed a ‘quiet scholarly life’ which he ‘lived to the full’.
Christopher Kemp, who lived in Lancing since the early 70s and was well known in the village, died peacefully on Friday, October 26.
His sister, Virginia Kemp, with whom he lived for many years, said: “He was very much liked. He was a quiet and modest man who enjoyed a long and happy life.”
Born in London, Mr Kemp won a top scholarship to Harrow where he developed a love of history.
Teachers encouraged his interest in Shakespeare and the theatre and he also enjoyed playing cricket.
Mr Kemp went on to read history at the University of Oxford before becoming a teacher.
He moved to Ring Road in Lancing with his wife and daughter Nicola, who also went on to become a teacher, and began working at Lancing College.
Virginia said: “I’m told he was a gifted teacher. He was a leading authority on the Third Reich and the rise of Hitler and Stalin.
“He loved teaching. He particularly loved being challenged by the students, he loved it when they disagreed with him and he very much enjoyed debating any points in history.”
Always a political person, Mr Kemp became a Conservative councillor – though Viriginia said he admired Clement Atlee just as much as he admired Winston Churchill, and also met both men.
“What he enjoyed as a councillor was that, although you fight for the votes for your local party, at the end of the day you focus on the needs of the local people of Lancing,” she said.
“He enjoyed debate and the cut and thrust of local politics but it was never acrimonious.”
Mr Kemp’s contribution to Adur District Council, as well as that of former councillor Robert Dunn who also died this year, was marked with a minute’s silence at a meeting of the full council in Shoreham last month.
Councillors paid tribute to both men for their long service, while their families watched on from the public gallery.
Councillor Pat Beresford said he first served with Mr Kemp on the council in the 1980s and described him as a ‘lovely, lovely man’.
He said: “Chris was perhaps the most eloquent speaker this council has ever had. He had such a clever way with words.”