Former Brighton mayoress dies

The Argus: Esther Theobald Esther Theobald

A former Brighton mayoress, who dined with a Prime Minister has died. 

Esther Theobald, Geoffrey Theobald's stepmother, who acted as consort to the mayor of Brighton in 1971, died on Friday.

A well known figure in the town, her first husband was Sydney Bellman, founder of Bellman's Wool and Bellman's Stores based in London Road, Brighton.

Following his death in 1969, she married Conservative politician Stanley Theobald, who went on to become mayor of Brighton in 1971.

Among the highlights of the year was a dinner at the Royal Pavilion with the then Prime Minister Edward Heath during the Tory party conference.

Stanley, who helped construct the Brighton Centre and as Brighton Borough Council's housing chairman built more local authority housing in the town than anyone else, died in 1998.

Esther, who was born in Burgess Hill and drove an ambulance in World War Two, never remarried.

She is survived by her son David and stepson Geoffrey, who is currently leader of the opposition on Brighton and Hove City Council.

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