TRIBUTES have been paid to ‘kind and generous’ former Worcester Mayor and fireman Coun Andy Roberts, who has died aged 74.
Coun Roberts, who served Warndon Parish on Worcestershire County Council for over 20 years and Warndon Parish South on the City Council for 17 years, passed away peacefully at his home at the end of last week.
He leaves behind wife Frances, who he married in 1974, children Wayne and Victoria, and granddaughter Kim.
He joined the County Council in 2001, representing Claines until 2005 and gaining a seat on the city council the following year.
He was then elected to serve Warndon Parish in 2009, the same year he was named Mayor of Worcester.
Born in Worcester as the youngest of four children, Coun Roberts spent his early life at St Clement’s Primary and Christopher Whitehead School for Boys.
He also played for Worcester Rugby Colts and went on to achieve great success at under 19 and 21 levels with the Hereford and Worcestershire and West Midlands sides.
In 1965, he joined Worcester City and County Fire Service aged 16 as a cadet junior fireman.
He enjoyed a long successful career, retiring 37 years later as Assistant Chief Fire Officer of Hereford and Worcester Fire and Rescue Service.
A charitable man, Coun Roberts went on to become a volunteer and driver for patients at St Richard’s Hospice alongside his wife.
His many years of service to the Hospice in several different roles saw him honoured by being appointed to the Council of Governors.
County Council Leader Simon Geraghty will be covering Coun Roberts’ role as Cabinet Member for Children and Families until a replacement can be appointed.
The leader said Coun Roberts championed the needs of children and families and gave a lifetime of service to Worcestershire.
“Andy’s thoughtful, measured and considered contributions will very much be missed by Cabinet, by Council and by the wider community in which he engaged so actively and had such a positive impact.”
Worcester conservative leader Coun James Stanley added: “Andy was a man whose kindness, generosity of spirit and wisdom knew no bounds and, in a world where old-fashioned common sense is occasionally at a premium, his leaving us will be felt by all those who had the pleasure of meeting him.
“Andy was a tireless advocate for those suffering through illness and particularly vulnerable young people and it was, I hope, a source of comfort to him and his family that lives have been genuinely taken forward as a result of his work.”
Mel Allcott, the Liberal Democrats City and County Councillor for Claines said: “On behalf of myself and the local party, I’d like to say Andy will be missed very much.
“He was a hardworking councillor and real champion of charitable causes.”