THE great and good of York joined the city's business community and family and friends at York Minster to say farewell to Andrew Digwood.

As The Press reported at the time, the former president and current vice president of York and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce, died after a short illness from colon cancer on November 6 aged just 46.

Reading the eulogy at Andrew's funeral in the Minster quire, his friend, Cllr Ashley Mason said: "Andrew's love of York and the city were palpable. To him it felt the city was just the right place to be."

Drawing attention to the red and white roses on top of the coffin, Cllr Mason pointed out that although Andrew was a Lancastrian, born in Burnley,  there was an extra white rose in the bouquet, "his heart was in Yorkshire".

He said, after studying law at Durham University, Andrew met his wife, Helen, in 2002 after both qualified as solicitors, and they married in 2010. They went on to have two children; George and Lucy in 2011 and 2015 respectively.

Until recently Mr Digwood worked at Rollits and in Spring this year became an Associate Director based in SJP Law’s York office, specialising in commercial dispute resolution.

He began his legal training in 1999 with an international law firm, working in their offices in Birmingham and Leeds, where he qualified and remained until 2004, working primarily in intellectual property disputes.

In 2004 he moved to York to join a regional law firm where as well as the experience in intellectual property disputes that he brought with him, he broadened his dispute resolution practice to advise on a range of other matters including property, contract, shareholder, partnership and inheritance disputes.

Cllr Mason praised Andrew's work as the president of York and North Yorkshire Chamber of Commerce throughout the pandemic and his support for him when he became York's under Sheriff last year - assisting the Lord Mayor and Sheriff on ceremonial occasions. 

He went on to say: "In his final weeks, Andrew had an opportunity which is denied to many people; to reflect upon the life he had lived and remember fondly the people he had met. There were no grudges, no frustrated ambitions and no bitterness."

He ended on a quote from Queen Elizabeth II: "Grief is the price we pay for love."

Also at the service, among Andrew's family, were his sister, Rachael, and mum and dad, Pam and Barry.

York Press: Andrew Digwood's coffin leaves York Minster on a horse drawn carriageAndrew Digwood's coffin leaves York Minster on a horse drawn carriage (Image: Haydn Lewis)

The Minster service was followed by refreshments at the Merchant Adventurers’ Hall, where Mr Digwood was a proud member of the Company.

York Mansion House’s flag is flying at half mast today as a sign of respect - rare honour normally reserved for serving councillors and aldermen: a testament to Andrew’s standing and recognising his contribution to York.

York Press: The flag at York Mansion House flying at half mast on the day of Andrew Digwood's funeralThe flag at York Mansion House flying at half mast on the day of Andrew Digwood's funeral (Image: Haydn Lewis)

The reception at the Merchant Adventurers Hall was followed by a smaller ceremony for close friends and family at York Crematorium at 3pm.