Cranleigh & District Lions Club – Lion Brian Burt, MJF

17 March 1937 – 1 November 2020

It is with great sadness that the Cranleigh & District Lions club announce the death, after a long illness, of one of our past presidents, Lion Brian Burt during the evening of the 1st day in November 2020.

Lion Brian, who was the Chairman of the Carnival Committee, will be greatly missed and our deepest sympathy and condolences go out to his widow Linda, his son Ben and daughters, Catherine and Erica and his grandchildren.

Brian, who joined the Cranleigh Lions on 1st July 1990, was the Club president twice, in 1992-93 and again the following year. As well as being the Club President, Brian had served on many committees but famously had saved the Carnival and moved it from the Cranleigh Showground to The Common alongside the High Street in 1996, and he remained as the Carnival Committee Chairman from then until now.

He was instrumental in deciding that the Cranleigh Fair would serve the community by offering the pitches to other fund-raising organisations and clubs rather than raising money for Lions. We have therefore never sought to make a profit, just to cover our costs and make it truly a day for the village.

His services to the Community were recognised by the International Association of Lions Clubs with an award of a Melvin Jones Fellowship. This award, in memory of the Lions founder, was presented to Brian on a sunny day in the Carnival Arena after he himself had presented prizes for the various fancy-dress classes. A fitting occasion in June 2017.

Although he had suffered with severe illnesses for over 30 years, he bore his pain with fortitude and courage and, although he may not always have shown it, Brian remained cheerful and stoical to the end. When he had found it too difficult to walk alongside the Santa Sleigh he donned the Santa Costume and with a “Ho, ho, ho” and a jolly wave to the children became “our Santa”.

The Lions are confident that Brian helped make a positive difference to the lives of very many people in our community. He will be missed by us all.

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