Russell was born and lived in Woodbridge for most of his life and was known to many people in the Town. He was elected to the newly formed Woodbridge Town Council in 1976 and served for a period of 35 years being re-elected every four years.
During his long service to Woodbridge Russell was Town Mayor on three occasions, namely 1982/83, 1994/95 and 2004/05. He was Chairman of a number of Council Committees and it is estimated over the years he attended many hundreds of meetings. Furthermore during each Mayoral year, Russell would have attended over 150 occasions or events, giving all of his time as a volunteer.
Along with being a member of Woodbridge Town Council, Russell also served on Suffolk Coastal District Council for over 20 years and was Chairman of this Council in 2000.
In 2001 Russell was recognised for his work. His neighbours wanted to acknowledge his commitment to the Town and lobbied to have a road named after him, namely Russell Close. Further recognition came Russell’s way in 2006 when the Chairman of the Suffolk Association of Local Councils (in association with the National Association of Local Councils), presented him with a 30 year certificate as a local Councillor. He is still one of only a handful of Suffolk Councillors who have been presented with this award.
Russell didn’t just devote his time to Council work, he was also actively involved in other ways giving outstanding commitment to Woodbridge and was a member of many clubs, societies and organisations which have benefitted Woodbridge over the years. Notably long time service to the Woodbridge Community Council, Woodbridge in Bloom, St Marys Church, St Marys School, Woodbridge Festival and Woodbridge Museum to name a few.
Russell epitomised what is means to be a volunteer as he always freely offered his services for the good of Woodbridge over his long life, and he will be very sorely missed by the Town Council Members and Officers alike.