Veteran actor was president of Rye Conservation Society

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Rye Conservation Society paid tribute to its president Sir Donald Sinden after the veteran actor died this month.

The actor lost his battle against prostate cancer on September 12, aged 90.

He had strong links with the Rye area, including a brother who lives in Fairlight.

Sir Donald Sinden CBE was appointed President of Rye Conservation Society on 21 April 1995.

John Griffiths, Chairman, Rye Conservation Society , said: “He was a keen supporter. He took an interest in the work of the Society but without interference.

“He regularly attended the Christmas gatherings in the Town Hall and the annual garden parties at Lamb House.

“At Christmas parties he would step forward and use his strong and distinctive voice to repeat the winning numbers of the raffle over the noise of the party. There was no need to call for silence. But there would then be silence as he told one or two of his many jokes. Between acts he was good company and a ready mixer.

“At the Annual Luncheons at the Mermaid his presence, company and stories made for happy memorable occasions.

“Rye Conservation Society will miss Sir Donald Sinden.”

Sir Donald also lent his acting skills to a special film made in Winchelsea by local actors and production crew.

Called The Red Slipper , it was set in the town in 1889 as soldiers departed to fight in the Boer War.

Sir Donald played Sir Henry Irving, who is shown visiting the famous Shakespearean actress Ellen Terry, a resident of Winchelsea in 1899.

Sir Donald is remembered warmly in Fairlight where he often gave solo performances relating anecdotes.