Sir John Hoddinott – An Appreciation
from the Parish Magazine, October 2001
The reference in last month’s magazine to the untimely death of Sir John Hoddinott, DBE APM DL MA (CANTAB) FRSA, past Chief Constable of Hampshire, was necessarily brief.
Sir John, acknowledged as “the outstanding policeman of his generation”, had lived for many years in Southdown Road along with Lady Avril and their daughters Rebecca and Louise. It was in the nature of John, a giant in more ways than one, to live unobtrusively and quietly but I, and others involved in village affairs over the last 15 years, have often been grateful for his thoughtful and valuable advice on village matters. Despite his important public duties he always knew what was going on in Compton & Shawford and took a close interest. Whenever asked to undertake tasks locally he was glad to oblige despite his heavy schedule, whether it be many years ago as President of our Youth Club or more recently performing the opening ceremony at the re-furbished Parish Hall.
Sir John’s premature death has deprived the village community of an invaluable friend, a powerful supporter, a giant, gentle man.