> The Hull Reform Synagogue - Ne've Shalom
The Hull Reform Synagogue - Ne've Shalom




Geoff Annis.jpg

The following feature entitled "Wife pays tribute to 'lovely' Hull drama teacher Geoff Annis after sudden death" was first published in the Hull Daily Mail on 28 December 2016. We feel this to be a fitting tribute to someone who touched some many lives in our own and in the wider community. We wish 'long life' to Lesley, Richard and Jonathan

The wife of a well-known drama teacher at the centre of Hull's theatrical community has paid a moving tribute following his sudden death.


Geoff Annis, 78, suffered a stroke during a major heart operation at Castle Hill Hospital and passed away just five days before Christmas.


He taught for 30 years as head of English and drama in secondary schools, including Wolfreton, Bilton Grange, Leo Schultz and Baysgarth in Barton-upon-Humber.


Describing her husband as a "lovely man", his wife Lesley, 72, said: "I don't know of anybody who has a bad thing to say about him. He adored his four grandchildren and was a loving, family man. His childhood friends say he was always doing daft things. He was a big, daft thing."


Mr Annis lived in Anlaby and was a member of the Guild of Drama Adjudicators. He also worked as a voice-over artist for brands such as Warburton's, Covent Garden Soup and Tetley's. Visitors to the Imperial War Museum in London will still be able to hear his voice playing over the displays, a thought that brings comfort to his wife, who would have celebrated 50 years of marriage in March. Mr Annis' breakthrough as an actor came at the Edinburgh Festival Fringe with a production of Richard III. He played the lead role and even received a glowing review from the Sunday Times critic Harold Hobson.


He later entered the Rose Bruford College of Speech and Drama and was a vital member of the Hessle Amateur Operatic and Dramatic society from 1977. He was a member of Hull Playgoers and Hull Literary Club, and ran an adult education course in Ripon on the works of Rudyard Kipling. One of his most public roles was in Coronation Street playing the registrar at one of Mike Baldwin's many weddings.


Since her husband's sudden death, Mrs Annis has been moved by the kind words and support of family and friends. She said: "I want to say thank you to all my family and friends who have been so kind and offered me so much support during this time. I could not have done this without them. I also want to thank the staff at Castle Hill. They never left Geoff's side and were wonderful."


The jazz-lover, who offered his voice to countless audio books, met his wife Lesley in Locarno, which later became LA's in Ferensway, and the pair married in 1967.<br>

As well as production and voiceover work, Mr Annis was part of the founding group who helped build the Reform Synagogue in Willerby. "Geoff was well known in the Jewish community and because of his faith he was buried on the Friday before Christmas," said Mrs Annis. "It has all been so sudden and I just want people to know how appreciative I am of their help and kindness, especially my immediate family."


Mr Annis is survived by his wife Lesley, two sons and four grandchildren.



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