Walter would regularly travel up north and help with volunteer digs.

A memorial has taken place for stalwart B4RN advocate and volunteer, Walter Willcox, who was our first shareholder.

Walter was a significant supporter of B4RN in the early years and that support continued right through to his retirement in 2021. He had a passion and commitment to bring full fibre broadband to the most remote parts of the country, bringing his vision to light in his home area too, with B4SH (Broadband for Surrey Hills).

Walter passed away earlier this year – a service to celebrate his life took place at St. Peter and St. Paul’s Church in Albury on Monday 23rd May.

B4RN Director Chris Carr joined more than 100 of Walter’s friends and family for the memorial, near Guildford.

He said: “Walter was a great friend and inspiration to B4RN – he was our first shareholder (and the holder of our one millionth share too) and he devoted generously of his time and talents to B4RN for a decade.

“It was clear at the service that Walter was held in enormous esteem in his home territory of the Surrey Hills. The great affection in which he was held and the universal admiration for his contribution to the development of broadband in his own rural hinterland were palpable.

“The service was uplifting and joyful – and had been largely devised by Walter before his death. All parts of his family contributed the service and it was lovely to hear in the eulogy that B4RN was as important to Walter as he was to B4RN.

“It was a very fitting service for someone who occupied such an important place in the hearts of the communities he served.”