We are saddened to report on the passing of the much loved Cllr Rivka Cresswell

Rivka had been a ward councillor representing Emsworth for the past 4 years and loved being able to help people with issues that concerned the local authority. She had a strong sense of service and care for her community and worked diligently for her community in Emsworth.

Rivka was born and brought up in Israel and lived in a kibbutz during her formative years. She served in the Israeli Defence Force during the Six days War and rose to the rank of captain.

After leaving the military Rivka came to this country and for many years worked for Tesco eventually becoming a senior member of the national security team. Before retirement from Tesco Rivka came to live in Park Crescent with her husband Barney and settled comfortably into the local community. Many Emsworthians will remember the iconic cook shop “Classy Cooks” that graced the High Street which was managed by Rivka for about 8 years until it closed.

Rivka had a particular interest in business and was always very keen to see that local businesses were supported and strived. This was one of the main reasons she wanted to become a councillor and was duly elected to serve the people of Emsworth in 2015. The military and the fate of those that serve their country had always a special place in Rivka’s heart and a couple of years ago she took over responsibility for organising the annual St Georges Day Parade in Emsworth in conjunction with Thorney Island and also the veterans.

One of Rivka’s proudest moments recently was when she laid a wreath on behalf of the people in the Borough for Ronald Carpenter, a service man from Havant who had died fighting in a peace keeping force in Palestine in 1947. Rivka located the grave in a war graves cemetery in Israel and made a special visit to pay her respects.

Rivka was on the Emsworth Museum committee and a member of the local Tree Warden group and only recently helped plant six Oak trees at Hampshire Farm Meadow. Rivka was a warm and sensitive person and she will be greatly missed by all who knew her.

Lulu Bowerman, a fellow councilor in Emsworth said” Rivka was a great person to work with, very caring and hugely generous with her time. She led by example with her enthusiasm and work ethic and she cared deeply for Emsworth. I shall miss her very much”

Michael Wilson, leader of the Council said 'I was shocked and saddened to learn of Rivka’s death. She had been a Councillor since 2015 and had been a trusted and active member of a number of important committees, including the Licensing Committee and the Development Management Committee. She also represented Havant Borough Council on the Chichester Harbour Conservancy and Langstone Harbour Board. I know that she was well respected by the local community and by her fellow Councillors and we will all miss her. My thoughts are with her husband, Barney.'