So we're sat with the first issue of Salford Star about to go to the printers. Everything has been done apart from the cover. We've got an exclusive self portrait by Christopher Eccleston which he's taken on his mobile phone and sent over. But we've also got a brilliant shot of Tiny Brown and Mary. Which is it to be – Tiny or Chris Eccleston? It just had to be Tiny!
Tiny embodied everything that the Salford Star stands for – he wasn't afraid to speak out against injustice, he wasn't afraid to speak out for the people on his estate, and he was well loved within the community. Tiny helped inspire the Salford Star strapline – with attitude and love xxx.
So Tiny made the cover. And when it was back from the printers the first thing we did was hand it out around Salford Precinct and to the taxi drivers queuing up there. The impact was incredible. Everyone seemed to either be related to Tiny or know him. There were traffic jams around the Precinct as the taxi drivers wouldn't budge their cabs while they read what Tiny had to say. The Salford Star, with cover star Tiny, had arrived.
Since then, every year the Star went back to see Tiny and Mary to get their views on the so-called regeneration (or non-regeneration) of Whit Lane, which was always "They've told us nothing". Unfortunately Tiny never got to see the results of Salford Council's grand scheme which left people's lives in limbo.
At today's service at St Sebastion's Church and Agecroft Cemetery, we learned a bit of Tiny's past life in Ordsall, his love of fishing and his love of life, as hundreds of people turned out to show their respect.
Colin `Tiny' Brown was a true SALFORD STAR.
"Today is a celebration of Colin's life, rather than a gathering of his death, a celebration where stories are told, eyes well up and laughter rings out."