Tributes have been paid in West Norfolk to Sir David Amess, who has been described as a “warm, kind, generous and humorous man”.
Sir David, 69, Conservative MP for Southend West, was stabbed while holding a constituency surgery at Belfairs Methodist Church in Leigh-on-Sea, Essex, a week ago.
A 25-year-old man was arrested at the scene on suspicion of murder and remains in police custody.
Speaking in his column in today’s (Friday) Your Local Paper, North West Norfolk MP James Wild said: “My initial reaction was total shock and then huge sadness. That someone could do this to one of the kindest, warmest, generous and humorous people in parliament is appalling.
“The tributes in the House of Commons underlined what a remarkable person he was. MPs from all parties spoke warmly of personal experiences of him.”
Speaking earlier this week, Mr Wild said Sir David was a “remarkable person” and it was right everyone heeded his family’s call for people to show kindness and work towards togetherness.
“I was fortunate to have known David and worked with him on issues including fairs and showgrounds as well having fond memories of interviewing him about his recent book about his time in Westminster.
“Above all he was committed to his family and it is they who are in my thoughts, along with his parliamentary team, friends and constituents.”
Liz Truss, South West Norfolk MP and foreign secretary, said: “The devastating death of Sir David Amess is truly awful – he was a lovely, lovely man and a superb parliamentarian, full of humour, kindness and compassion.
“My thoughts are very much with his family, friends and parliamentary team at this dreadful time.”
On Monday, flags were flown at half-mast at borough council buildings and King’s Lynn Town Hall was lit up in red, white and blue in memory of Sir David.
West Norfolk Mayor Harry Humphrey said Sir David was a devoted husband and father and a well-liked and respected MP.
“Our thoughts and prayers are with Sir David’s family and close friends on his shocking death,” he said.
“He was somebody carrying out his duty on behalf of his constituents. It was a strike against personal lives and the personal way constituency politics are carried out in our country. It was a truly appalling and savage act of terrorism.
“While there are some who carry out such mindless acts of terror and others that might condone such atrocities, the rest of our country deplore such savagery which strikes at the heart of our democracy and the safety of our people.”
Mr Humphrey said there had been previous attacks on MPs, including the murder of Jo Cox five years ago.
He said: “Our MPs are aware of the risk and try to manage it where possible, but they recognise the value and confidentiality of the face-to-face meeting, and many have said that they will continue with their surgeries.
“We thank them for their dedication and hope that their safety at surgeries can be improved to prevent future attacks.
“By all reports Sir David was a dedicated constituency MP and valued in his parliamentary activities on many issues. He will be sorely missed. We send condolences to his family and friends in their very sad loss.”
Norfolk Constabulary has offered reassurance to communities in light of the attack, which has been declared as a terrorist incident by the Metropolitan Police.
Assistant Chief Constable Eamonn Bridger, Protective Services and Joint Justice Services, said: “Our thoughts are with the friends and family of Mr Amess after this awful incident which is believed to have been carried out by a man who was acting alone.
“We would urge communities to continue to be tolerant and supportive of all those affected by the tragedy and encourage anyone who suffers as a result of this incident to get in contact with us.”