Devoted pensioner's rights campaigner passes away aged 79

Chair of Hackney Pensioners Convention Paul Higgens passed away at the age of 79. 

Chair of Hackney Pensioners Convention Paul Higgens passed away at the age of 79. - Credit: Courtesy of the Higgens Family

A Hackney man who devoted his time to older people and fighting for their rights has passed away. 

Paul Higgins died on July 31, 2021, from cancer at the age of 79. He was born in Kingston and moved to Hackney in the 1990s. 

Paul was the chair of the Hackney Pensioners Convention (HPC) and an occasional chair of the Older People's Reference Group, which sits under Age UK. 

Both organisations advocate for older people to improve services and enact change in the borough. 

Nigel Gansell, secretary of the HPC, said Paul was keen to keep the convention going despite a reduction in the group's members

He added: "It’s a great loss to the convention."

Paul Higgins was engaged in multiple Hackney groups supporting older people. 

Paul Higgins was engaged in multiple Hackney groups supporting older people. - Credit: Courtesy of the Higgins family


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Paul was also involved in The SHARP End on Holly Street, which offers fitness and friendship for isolated people over the age of 50, as well as The Concert Artistes Benevolent Fund, based in Bedford Square.

Paul was the treasure at the fund until about 10 days before he died when he resigned. The keen singer who loved opera was also in the fund's choir and the choir at St John of Jerusalem church in South Hackney.

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Before he retired Paul worked as a London open air tour bus guide He spent his later years leading older people on health and history walks in Islington and Hackney.

Paul was also part of the Senior Building Exploratory Explorers (Senior BEEs) group which was based in Hackney. 

Treasurer of Hackney Pensioners Convention Jonathan Malins-Smith said: "Paul was an engaged and valued member of the South Hackney community. "

Paul Higgens's funeral was held on August 31 at St John At Jerusalem.

To find out more about joining Hackney Pensioner's Convention email jcms1957@outlook.com or call 07432416084

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