Hundreds raised for funeral of ‘gentle rogue’ with ‘a heart of gold’

Sid outside Lloyds TSB George Street in 2006 (Photograph: Keven Meredith)
Sid outside Lloyds TSB George Street in 2006 (Photograph: Keven Meredith)

The mother of a well-known beggar who died earlier this month is ‘overwhelmed’ by the generosity of those who donated to his funeral fund.

Sam Woodhouse – better known as Sid – died on March 4 at the age of 37 after an ulcer bled into his stomach.

A vase and a memorial to Sid at George Street, in the spot he used to sit

A vase and a memorial to Sid at George Street, in the spot he used to sit

His mother Hazel Woodhouse said: “Sid was a bit of a rogue at times but he was kind and gentle. He didn’t live his life they way I wanted him to but he was a grown man so he made his own choices and I accepted that.”

Known for asking passers-by to ‘spare some change for drink or drugs please’, Sid often sat outside Lloyds TSB George Street with his dog Stinky and her father Mudd.

Mudd died some years ago but Stinky is ‘happy and safe’ with a friend.

One of Sid’s friends set up a JustGiving page, raising over £900 for the funeral that took place in Bolton on March 16. A further £300 was raised after a member of the public left a vase and memorial in the spot on George Street where Sid used to sit.

Alexandra Harper who set up the JustGiving page ‘Sid’s funeral fund’, said: “I haven’t got a lot of money but I wanted to take some of the stress away from Sid’s mum. Thank you to everyone for helping because it is so appreciated. Sid was a troubled soul but he had a heart of gold.”

Sid moved from Bolton to Brighton when he was 19, and spent many of those years indulging his passions for reading and dogs. He was often known as ‘Sid The Tramp’, a name he liked so much he considered changing it by deed poll.

A date has not yet been fixed for a planned memorial in Brighton.