Search

Norwich City superfan’s legacy lives on with donation to beloved charity

PUBLISHED: 14:52 20 January 2020 | UPDATED: 15:13 20 January 2020

Donations accepted at Julian King's funeral will be donated to Dereham Salvation Army. Pictured is Mr King with Norwich City legend Wes Hoolahan. Picture: The King family

Donations accepted at Julian King's funeral will be donated to Dereham Salvation Army. Pictured is Mr King with Norwich City legend Wes Hoolahan. Picture: The King family

Archant

The legacy of a Norwich City superfan will be kept alive with a donation to the charity closest to his heart.

Dereham legend and Norwich City superfan Julian King died in December 2019. Picture: ArchantDereham legend and Norwich City superfan Julian King died in December 2019. Picture: Archant

Julian King, known to many in the Dereham area as 'Kingo', died on December 8 at the age of 57.

Having spent much of his life going out of his way to help others, Mr King's death triggered an outpouring of emotion from the Dereham and Norwich City communities.

Almost 500 people turned out for his funeral at St Nicholas Church on Friday, January 3, proof of the immense impact he had on so many lives.

There was an opportunity to grant Mr King's dying wish as donations to the Dereham branch of The Salvation Army were accepted.

Sam King pictured with her husband Julian King, from Dereham, who has died at the age of 57. Picture: The King familySam King pictured with her husband Julian King, from Dereham, who has died at the age of 57. Picture: The King family

"About 30 years ago, when Julian was a single dad living on Sandy Lane, The Salvation Army turned up at Christmas time," said Mr King's wife, Sam.

"They gave him Christmas dinner, enough food to last for a week and even presents for his daughter.

"Because of that they always stayed in his memory. He always wanted donations from his funeral to go somewhere local and he never ever forgot them."

Mr King, who suffered with MS for decades and used his chin to operate a motorised wheelchair, was committed to improving the lives of those experiencing similar hardships.

Julian 'Kingo' King, a keen Norwich City fan from Dereham, died at the age of 57 in December 2019. Picture: The King familyJulian 'Kingo' King, a keen Norwich City fan from Dereham, died at the age of 57 in December 2019. Picture: The King family

For nine years he ran Dereham Access Group and campaigned tirelessly for automatic doors to be installed across the town.

He also served as chairman with the Les Potter Memorial Trust and started Positive People, a place for those with disabilities to meet.

Kidney failure and the resulting need for regular dialysis proved restrictive later in life, but Mr King retained a positive mindset and his typically friendly demeanour.

"About 480 people came to the funeral - the vicar had never done one that big," added Mrs King. "The town really did him proud and I'd like to say a massive thank you to everyone who came.

Donations accepted at Julian King's funeral will be donated to Dereham Salvation Army. Picture: The King familyDonations accepted at Julian King's funeral will be donated to Dereham Salvation Army. Picture: The King family

"It's incredible really because Julian was just a normal, everyday guy. For a normal person to get that kind of turnout is absolutely amazing."

Donations to Dereham Salvation Army can still be made via WC Littleproud and Son funeral directors on South Green, Dereham. The final sum will be handed over in the coming weeks.

Become a supporter

This newspaper has been a central part of community life for many years, through good times and bad. Coronavirus is one of the greatest challenges our community has ever faced, but if we all play our part we will defeat it. We're here to serve as your advocate and trusted source of local information.

In these testing times, your support is more important than ever. Thank you.

Most Read

Most Read

Latest from the Dereham Times