A St Martins Parish councillor will be missed after he died suddenly over the weekend, says the chair of the council.

Councillor Helen Williams paid tribute to Cllr John Stevens, 76, a former county councillor and parliamentary candidate for the Liberal Democrats.

Cllr Williams says her friendship with Cllr Stevens stretched back 25 years and praised his work on the council, as well as all the groups he worked on.

"John will most definitely be missed by all the people in the village," said Cllr Williams.

"He was the backbone of this parish council because he was so knowledgeable and because was so organised, he could pull out the right information.

"He was always so kind.

"I've known him for 25 years, probably.

"I first knew him as a county councillor, and when he was also the chair of governors at St Martins, while I was also friends with his wife Sue at the WI.

"She died about five years ago.

"John was passionate about St Martins and everything he was involved in.

"Whatever group he was involved in, he always gave it 100 per cent, and he was very passionate about it.

"He was such a kind gentleman – that's his legacy, that everyone will remember him so well.

"John was part of my parish council and he was so knowledgeable about it, always remembering the right thing.

"Also, he was part of the recreations partnerships where we were trying to bring sports facilities to St Martins, as well as editing the Life Magazine for the village.

"He did family trees for people and also worked ion the Ifton Colliery memorial."