Tributes were today paid to popular Blackpool councillor and former deputy mayor Tony Lee who has died after a short illness.
Coun Lee, a Conservative, had represented the South Shore ward of Waterloo for the past seven years.
Bispham ward councillor Coun Don Clapham, who served as mayor in 2010/11, chose Coun Lee and his wife Eileen to serve as his deputy mayor and deputy mayoress.
He said: “He was so proud to be asked to represent the mayoralty of Blackpool as a Blackpool-born lad.
“He was absolutely overcome, it was fantastic. They did an absolutely superb job.”
Coun Clapham added: “It’s just a terrible loss because Tony was a great councillor for Waterloo who lived in the ward, knew the patch and he’s made a tremendous impact as a ward councillor.
“He came into politics late in life and couldn’t have been more energetic.
“To lose a man like that, a fellow councillor and friend, is shocking.”
Coun Lee, a father and grandfather, is believed to have been taken ill while on a recent family holiday in France.
He was first elected to the council in 2007, and served on the licensing committee, planning committee and scrutiny committee.
Coun Paul Galley, who represents Anchorsholme, said: “He did some incredible work in Waterloo and I know how much he cared about the area, and how much fun he had in the way he did the role.
“He was a great councillor, I’m so upset and I’m going to miss him so much.
“We are all gutted.”
Coun Lee was also heavily involved in trying to right the problems surrounding Houses of Multiple Occupancy (HMOs) in his ward.
Coun Galley added: “He was very much at the coalface.
“I’m really sorry for him personally because he’ll never be able to finish off the work he started.”