Tributes paid to much-loved ex-café owner Roy Blacklaws
GLOWING tributes have been paid to much-loved Roy Blacklaws who ran the 'finest coffee parlour in the universe'.
Roy's popular coffee shop Tradewinds closed around 14 years ago after more than a decade in Nelson Street.
He passed away on December 12 aged 73.
Daughter Rachael Shakeshaft said: "His mother had a similar coffee shop in London.
"He was very well travelled and was inspired by Europe.
"I think his main reason for setting up the shop was so that he could have a decent cup of coffee.
"There weren't many coffee shops in those days.
"It was a tiny place but it was always packed."
A deputy head at a school for troubled children in Longford, he moved on to Archway School where he taught metalwork and woodwork.
He set up Tradewinds after retiring from teaching.
Former customers, pupils and dozens of friends posted warm tributes on Facebook.
Poet Adam Horovitz said: "Roy was the proprietor of one of the finest coffee parlours in the universe, much missed in Stroud.
"Tradewinds should have existed in 18th century Paris or London rather than late 20th century Stroud and thanks to Roy's broad range of knowledge, biting wit and fantastic teas, coffees and tobaccos it sometimes felt like it did."
Marcus Moore said: "Roy made us think, made us smile, and made fabulous coffee. "Paterfamilias, favourite uncle, calm counsellor. We will long cherish the memories.
Tasha Goddard added: "A truly amazing man who helped a lot of us learn, think, laugh and cry. He has a very special place in my heart and my memories."
Mattibald Arch said: "I remember frequenting Tradewinds, not necessarily to drink coffee, but often to just socialise, in my mid-teens, and remember Roy's pleasant demeanour with fondness."
Crispin Thomas said: "It always overwhelmed me walking in, so small, magical and atmospheric.
"Always a smile from Roy even when you were just taking in a poster for a gig but he'd always find a place for you."
Roy was a grandfather of four and father of three, to Rachael, Becki and the late Ralph.
His funeral was held at Gloucester Crematorium on Monday.
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