Wallis Tomlinson co-founder Geoff Tomlinson passes away


By Stephen Lepitak, -

November 5, 2012 | 3 min read

The Drum is sad to report the death of Wallis Tomlinson co-founder Geoff Tomlinson following a battle with cancer.

Geoff Tomlinson

Tomlinson set up the agency alongside partner George Wallis in 1989, growing it into one of the most distinguished creative houses in the Midlands and working on accounts such as Puma, National Express, Right Move, Hyundai and Subaru.

The agency was sold to Palmer Hargreaves in 2002, at which point Tomlinson carried on as creative director.

George Wallis, director of Palmer Hargreaves, said: “Geoff was a true ‘old school’ creative talent and he brought a genuinely creative agency to the Midlands alongside my father.

"Everyone that worked with him enjoyed his sharp wit and creative personality. Geoff was a magnetic persona to be around and truly unforgettable once you had been. For me, it’s the end of an era, the man was a legend. The world will be a duller place without him in it.”

Andrew Clift, executive chairman of Palmer Hargreaves, added: “It was with great sadness that we learned of Geoff’s death - but sadness isn’t an emotion that I can associate with Geoff’s memory for very long.

“Nobody who spent a long lunchtime - and they were legendary - in Geoff’s company could fail to be entertained, amused and eventually, inebriated. Geoff was a proper ‘old school’ ad man. He and his business partner George Wallis built an agency that in its day, could rival the best of the London shops and built a strong creative reputation on the back of truly outstanding work for a variety of clients, foremost amongst them being Subaru.

"When Palmer Hargreaves was looking to acquire another agency, top of our criteria was creative reputation – which led us straight into a conversation with Geoff & George, culminating in the creation of PHWT in 2002. Geoff was gifted, instinctive, highly creative, eminently charismatic and a true gentleman. Bye Geoff, we’ll miss you.”

The Drum understands that Tomlinson, who was 69, passed away peacefully last week at home while surrounded by family.

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Palmer Hargreaves

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