Jim Addington who died last Thursday was an ardent campaigner for peace and justice. He was an enthusiastic writer to the papers and other periodicals, exhorting, encouraging and criticising. Jim was capable of becoming impatient and warm in argument, but we will remember him more for his great charm, his thoughtful intelligence and his passion for peace making work. He seemed equally happy with a pen or a placard in his hand.
Jim was a
After Ruskin, Jim started teacher training, but decided that this was not for him. He took a variety of commercial jobs in and around the South East before setting up the successful soft furnishing business, Addingtons of Tolworth, that bore his name for many decades. He and Rosemary developed Addingtons from its small beginnings in 1969 into a well known and respected local business. How they contrived to do this with their level of activism is something of a mystery to many of us. In 2005 they decided to reduce their commitments and work from home, with Jim continuing to measure for carpets until shortly before he and Rosemary left on his last holiday.
In his early working years Jim showed no sign of his later left wing commitment and activism. Indeed, he was a member of the Young Conservatives although he said that it was mainly for social reasons. The Thatcher years started the change, but Rosemary says that it was watching a recording of the film The War Game that really triggered Jim’s change of political direction, together with the arrival of cruise missiles on British soil. Another formative influence was Joe and Joan Cheek, committed communists who were close friends with Jim and Rosemary.
Jim developed into a committed and very effective campaigner against
nuclear weapons and for the UN and international peace movement. He
was on CND National Council for many years, also was Chair of
Action for UN Renewal, long serving member and former Chair of London Region
CND, an active member of
Although activism was his passion, Jim enjoyed a wide range of cultural experiences – concerts, theatre, travel, country walks and a good argument. He was a keen member of Kingston Choral Society.
His many friends and admirers will remember Jim Addington’s enthusiasm, his gentleness and the pleasure of his civilised company.
He and Rosemary loved Polperro and spent happy holidays there for
almost 35 years. Jim was taken ill while
he was on holiday in