TRIBUTES have been paid to a former councillor who served his town for more than two decades and was a key figure in community life.

George Elliott, who died at the age of 81 on Christmas Eve, started his political career in 1980 and served on Chilton Town Council until May 2007 when he retired.

Mr Elliott, a miner for 25 years, was an active member of the council’s allotment committee and had vast knowledge of growing produce.

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He set up the leek club at Chilton and Windlestone Workingmen’s Club and was secretary of its fishing club.

A council spokesman said Mr Elliott deserved credit for his long standing political career during which he was always dedicated and extremely passionate about Chilton.

Mr Elliott is survived by his wife of 60 years, Joan; son Keven (CORRECT), who lives in Australia; and daughter Lyn, of Woodham.

Mayor of Chilton, Coun Elizabeth Bruce, said: “I have known George for many years.

He will be sadly missed by the members, officers and the wider community. Our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time.”

Town clerk, Paul Gray, added: “I was saddened to learn at the passing of George. It was a pleasure to work with him when he was a councillor as he was extremely dedicated and committed to Chilton.”