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Tributes to Lydden Hill recovery truck driver Colin Faulkner

By Dan Wright

A much-loved recovery truck driver who dedicated decades to Lydden Hill has died following a stroke.

Grandfather-of-five Colin Faulkner, 80, had given up his time at the race circuit since the 1960s.

The scrap metal merchant, who lived in Deal, collapsed in the street last month.

Colin with Matthew Bennett and Kevin Abbott. Picture: Martin Morley
Colin with Matthew Bennett and Kevin Abbott. Picture: Martin Morley

His wife, Stephanie, says he will be much missed at the Dover track.

She said: "Somebody said to me Lydden was Colin's second home, but it was probably his first as he absolutely loved the place.

"As soon as the circuit's schedule for the year came out, he would circle the events on the calendar and he would always be there.

"He was always happy at Lydden and rallycross was his particular favourite."

Colin with his recovery truck at Lydden. Picture: Martin Morley
Colin with his recovery truck at Lydden. Picture: Martin Morley

Colin, who was born in Eastry and grew up in Sandwich, became involved with Lydden when founder Bill Chesson was at the helm.

He worked at a butchers after leaving school and joined the Haffenden rubber factory following his national service.

Along with business partners Dave Farbrace and Mick Coulson, he became a scrap metal merchant after forming the Sandwich Metal Company.

'Colin was the longest-serving person of all time at Lydden...' - Alan Rees

As well as driving his recovery truck at Lydden, Colin also volunteered as a marshal.

Stephanie, 62, added: "No matter who he was talking to at the circuit - whether it was a famous driver or just a spectator - Colin would speak to them in exactly the same way.

"He wasn't very materialistic at all.

"There are so many clothes in his wardrobe that were never worn - he was happy in a pair of tatty jeans with paint on them and a boiler suit!"

Colin, who suffered a stroke four years ago and volunteered for the St John Ambulance, was walking in Rectory Road, Deal, when he had another stroke last month.

Passers-by and paramedics rushed to his aid, but the St Richard's Road resident could not be saved.

Colin (left) with Matthew Bennett and Kevin Abbott at Lydden. Picture: Martin Morley
Colin (left) with Matthew Bennett and Kevin Abbott at Lydden. Picture: Martin Morley

Stephanie - who had been married for Colin for 38 years - said: "I can't thank everyone who helped enough.

"He was taken to the QEQM hospital in Margate and they were wonderful there.

"Colin loved his life - he would always give 100% to everything he was involved in and he lived life to the full."

Ramsgate resident Alan Rees, who has worked at Lydden for 25 years, says Colin will be sorely missed at the circuit.

Tributes posted on Facebook described him as a legend of the track.

Mr Rees said: "Colin was the longest-serving person of all time at Lydden.

"He was always at the circuit - and I can't think of a time when he wasn't there.

"He just loved being at the track and we would always talk about the old days together."

Colin's funeral will be held at the St Martin's Church in Great Mongeham, Deal, next Thursday (March 15) at 2pm.

On the way to Barham Crematorium for the committal, the procession will stop at Lydden to do a lap of the circuit.

The wake will follow at the Royal Hotel in Deal. There is no strict dress code and family flowers only, with donations to the Stroke Association.

Donations can be made through J. Dilnot Smith & Son, 184 Gladstone Rd, Walmer, CT14 7EL. Call 01304 380914 for details.

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