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Former Ashford MP Sir Keith Speed remembered at his funeral in Rolvenden

By Dan Wright

Long-serving former Ashford MP Sir Keith Speed has been remembered as a "remarkable" man at his funeral.

Sir Keith, who had been ill for some months, died in the William Harvey Hospital last month aged 83.

Mourners gathered at St Mary’s in Sparkeswood Avenue, Rolvenden, this afternoon to remember the grandfather-of-two.

Sir Keith Speed

Sir Keith Speed

His son, Mark, told the service: "He was a remarkable, sensitive, passionate and highly intelligent man who touched many people's lives. 

"He was approachable and likable with a mischievous sense of humour."

Sir Keith became Ashford MP in 1974, before standing down in favour of Damian Green - who attended the service today - in 1997.

MP Damian Green arrives with wife Alicia Collinson. Picture Andy Jones

MP Damian Green arrives with wife Alicia Collinson. Picture: Andy Jones

The funeral was held in Rolvenden. Picture Andy Jones

The funeral was held in Rolvenden. Picture: Andy Jones

He is credited with bringing the high-speed rail link to the town and was appointed as Navy minister under prime minister Margaret Thatcher in 1979.

He was sacked from his position in 1981, after he refused to accept reductions in the size of the Royal Navy.

For full coverage of Sir Keith's funeral, see next week's Kentish Express

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