Art gallery owner and former magistrate wins rounding rights

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A WELL-KNOWN art gallery owner, who served as magistrate and city councilor, was granted borough freedom.

Henry Donn was nominated as Freeman by council members at their recent full council meeting.

Henry has served the community locally and nationally and was appointed MBE in 2016 after over 60 years of public service in Greater Manchester.

Henry said: ‘I got my MBE from Prince Charles six years ago at Buckingham Palace, and at 90 this extra honor is the icing on the cake’

“I would like to feel that I have accepted this honor on behalf of the wonderful hospitals and organizations I have had the privilege of serving over the years.”

After completing his national service in the Corps of Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers, Henry started his own business as a fine art dealer, opening the Henry Donn Gallery in Whitefield.

A friend of LS Lowry, Henry was an honorary consultant for the Lowry Center when it opened in 2000.

Henry was elected to the old Whitefield Council in 1965 and became chairman six years later, serving as an independent until the council became part of the new Bury MBC.

He was chairman of the health committee when Whitefield became the first town in the North West to become smoke-free.

Among his many community roles, Mr. Donn was president of St. John Ambulance Cadets in Whitefield and was one of the founders of the Whitefield Abbeyfield Society Home for the Aged.

In 1973 he was appointed to the Bury Area Health Authority, serving on the boards of Bury General and Fairfield hospitals.

Mr Donn was appointed as a magistrate in Bury in 1975, serving on the active list for 26 years and then on the supplementary list for a further 20 years.

For many years he represented AJEX (Association of Jewish Ex-Servicemen) and continues to perform the annual wreath laying at the Cenotaph in Whitefield.

Bury Mayor Cllr Tim Pickstone said: ‘It was a huge honor to preside over the ceremony granting borough freedom to Mr Donn.

“It’s something we don’t do very often in Bury, but on this occasion the honor was well deserved.

“Henry has devoted his entire life to public service, in many different fields.

“As Bury’s oldest living civic leader, we are very grateful for his service.”

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