Tributes paid to motorbiking Catholic priest

Canon Denis McSweeney'(c) the Diocese of Northampton
Canon Denis McSweeney'(c) the Diocese of Northampton

A long-serving Catholic priest has died peacefully in his sleep, at home in Flitwick.

Canon Denis McSweeney, who dedicated 40 years to the priesthood, was the priest at Sacred Heart Church, Flitwick, at the time of his death.

While a well-loved figure in the church, Father Denis was also known as a keen biker, with a great passion for motorbikes.

His home, in Pope Close, revealed another interest in collecting antiques; old telephones which he repaired, wind-up gramophones and an eclectic art collection.

He was known to his friends and the community as a man of wit, with excellent comic timing, and as an accomplished musician.

He was recently made an Honoury Citizen of Flitwick in recognition of his service in, and in care for, the town.

Father Denis was born in County Cork, and after attending a local primary school, went to a private boarding school in North Wales. Here he developed his talent for music.

He was ordained in 1975, and began his ecclesiastical life in the Northampthon diocese.

On Thursday 23 July, between 7pm and 9pm, there will be a service, with prayer for Fr Denis and his family.

A book of condolence is open on www.sacredheartflitwick.co.uk