We were very sad to learn that our friend, and former Assistant Director of pteg, died peacefully in his sleep at the weekend after a long illness.
Here are a few extracts from what we said to Matt at his leaving event following on from his cancer diagnosis.
‘Matt’s chosen profession has been public service, in local government, in urban policy in particular. Some people seem to imply that local government and public service is somehow second rate, shouldn’t be valued. And like any career choice it has its challenges and frustrations.
But what is the work that Matt chose to do all about at root?
What it’s not been about is selling more mars bars, or abandoning your beliefs and values just to make as much money as you can or to get up the greasy pole.
What it’s been about is that Matt has wanted to make his contribution to making our cities greener, more dynamic, fairer, more exciting and just plain better places to be.
And what’s that ultimately about? It’s been about seeking to make the world a better place.
And that says something about Matt’s character.
And what that also says a lot about Matt’s character is the way he has carried out that work with pteg. The good humour, the intelligence, the dignity, the camaraderie and the quiet determination. And also that Matt is one of the good guys. And that in turn is the reason why since your illness, there has been so much concern expressed, so many best wishes and support.’
We also promised Matt that he may have been leaving pteg but pteg wasn’t leaving him. And we know that Matt valued the support that he received from former colleagues throughout the pteg network, but also from the wider policy community in which he worked during his career. Following his medical retirement Matt was also able spend time with his family and friends and enjoy a generally good quality of life, considering the nature of the illness. Matt was a good man and he will be sadly missed. Our thoughts are with his family.