Wakefield Labour Club pays tribute to former president George Denton

Wakefield’s Red Shed has paid tribute to its former president who died aged 74.
Watch more of our videos on Shots! 
and live on Freeview channel 276
Visit Shots! now

Current Wakefield Labour Club president Matthew Hallis said: “George William Denton is not a household name and he was neither a politician or trades union leader.

"But in his 74 years, he made a vast array of friends from all walks of life.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"He was president of the Wakefield Labour Club for two periods covering much of the last three decades and was a born and bred Wakefield man bringing up his family here.

George Denton pulls a pintGeorge Denton pulls a pint
George Denton pulls a pint

"As club president, he took his turn behind the bar and was always quick with a joke as well as a pint. Invariably the pint was better than the joke.

"He was part of the real ale movement in Wakefield and the Club, through his leadership, became known for the quality and variety of well priced beer.

"Always served with a smile when George was on hand. For many years he ran the club cellar and ordered beers from near and far.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"During his period in office the club celebrated its 50th birthday with gusto, with speakers, bands, a book and a play telling the story of a little wooden hut, the Red Shed as it came to be known.

George Denton at the Red ShedGeorge Denton at the Red Shed
George Denton at the Red Shed

"George took trouble to be involved with the organisations using the club, the pensioners groups, literary clubs, the Red Shed Players, the local CAMRA and members of the trades union and Labour movement which met in the club on a regular basis.

"He was frequently behind the bar when the VIPs met – Visually Impaired People, every second Monday and when, eventually, he retired from bar work they sang ‘For He’s a Jolly Good Fellow’ to send him off.

"It was not always an easy task to run the Shed. During lockdown, the building had to be inspected every day and correspondence sorted and bills paid.

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

"Licenses had to be applied for, the day to day business of the club dealt with and the lease renegotiated.

“He was always on hand to play his part in everything.

"Sadly, after a short illness George succumbed to kidney failure, due to cancer, at the age of 74 whilst in Pinderfields Hospital and on November 6, Wakefield Crematorium was packed out with many of the friends he had made.

"Of course his wake was held at a very crammed Labour Club.

“To say he will be missed is a massive understatement. He will leave behind memories of a kind, generous, hard working president who will be remembered as a club legend.

"His shoes will take some filling. Goodbye Mr Red Shed, our George.”

Hide Ad
Hide Ad

George was born in Wakefield in April 1949, one of four children of Claude and Eve.

Daughter Nicola Jukes said: “My dad was an inspiration to all who knew him, the most kind man I have ever known, always giving sweets to the kids on the close were we lived,10p bread to the neighbours as he didn’t like to waste, cheap socks from his work, and the best his home made wine or beer to everyone who actually liked it."

Related topics: