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Tributes as Preston’s Spud Man dies

Posted on - 30th September, 2020 - 11:02am | Author - | Posted in - Flag Market, People, Preston City Centre, Preston News
The Spud Van Pic: Tony Worrall
The Spud Van on the Flag Market Pic: Tony Worrall

Preston’s ‘Spud Man’ Keith Roberts has died.

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Popular Keith ran The Hot Potato Tram serving spuds and parched peas on the Flag Market.

According to the Lancashire Post, Keith passed away from cancer at the age of 43.

Tributes have flooded in for the father-of-four.

A Twitter post from Preston BID said: “Our thoughts are with the family and friends of Keith Roberts, #Preston’s famous ‘spud’ and ‘parched pea’ man, who traded from his Guild Tram on the Flag Market. A very popular and familiar face in our city centre, he will he missed. RIP Keith.”

Disability Equality North West responded to the post, saying “We’re gutted to hear of Keith’s passing, such a lovely man,” while Oxfam Bookshop commented: “RIP Keith, the Flag Market isn’t the same without you.”

Stephen Boyle tweeted: “The finest of men I had the pleasure of knowing all my life. Condolences to all his family and friends. A sad, sad day.”

Keith Roberts
Keith Roberts: “Massive heart and a huge loss to those that loved him.”

Keith was a member of the Preston Past and Preston Facebook group. In March he shared a nostalgic video of his Dad working on the ‘spudcart’.

Hundreds of fellow group members have paid tribute to Keith, a former pupil at Corpus Christi Catholic High School in Fulwood, on a post announcing his death.

Friends and family wrote of their shock at the news.

Victoria Duckett said: “I am absolutely shocked and devastated about this. My condolences go to Kelly, his four lovely children and his family. Keith Roberts was a truly wonderful man and he will undoubtedly be missed.”

Keith’s cousin Mark Roberts said: “RIP big lad. Massive heart and a huge loss to those that loved him.”

Loyal customers also added tributes to Keith.

Customers at the spud van Pic: Tony Worrall
Customers at the spud van Pic: Tony Worrall

Jo Whittle said: “So sad to hear this news . Rip Keith. Thoughts and prayers are with all of his family and friends. Was forever at the potato stall over the years as it was a favourite of mine and my daughter whenever we went to town.”

Terri Gregson-Mclelland said: “RIP keith thinking of all the family at this sad time…Fond memories of going too keith for the best potatoes and parched peas since I was no age.”

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Did you know Keith? Share your own tributes in the comments below.

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