LYME Regis is mourning the loss of one of the biggest characters of the church and wider community, the Reverend Keith Vivian.
The Reverend Vivian died yesterday (Thursday) following a short stay at Dorset County Hospital in Lyme Regis.
A former headmaster and keen rugby player, the Reverend Vivian moved to Lyme Regis from Somerset with his wife Audrey in the 1980s and the couple threw themselves into community life.
In particular, they became dedicated members of St Michael’s Parish Church where Keith would regularly lead or take part in services, as well as often taking part in civic and community events.
Members of the town council have been speaking of the Reverend Vivian’s “fabulous sense of humour”, his “generous disposition”, and how he “always had a smile”.
They have also paid tribute to his commitment and support to the town, describing him as a “real Lyme legend”.
In a personal tribute, the mayor Cllr Brian Larcombe said: “Keith was an important member of Lyme’s community, as reverend of St Michael’s and the support he gave to everyone in the town.
“He had a special way with people and always had time for everyone. I will miss his quiet influence and the way he would impart a guidance or a view that was never forced, always inviting, and conveyed with gravity and humour in equal measure. He will be sorely missed.
“A very sad loss to Audrey and family, and loss to the people of Lyme.”
The Reverend Vivian was a member of Lyme Regis Rotary Club for more than 20 years, and had previously served the Rotary Club of Chelwood Bridge, in Somerset.
He was also a life-member of the Lyme Regis/St George’s Twinning Association.
Keith is survived by his wife Audrey, a son and daughter, and his grandchildren.