HEARTFELT tributes have been paid to Claines city councillor Stuart Denlegh-Maxwell who has passed away suddenly
The respected Conservative died on Monday (June 10) aged 60, leaving behind a wife, four children and four grandchildren.
Devastated city councillors cancelled a meeting of the authority’s Licensing and Environmental Health Committee, which he was due to attend, after hearing the news.
Coun Denlegh-Maxwell returned to the Guildhall last May after a 24-year gap from Worcester politics to continue his family’s long association with serving the city.
He served the people of Claines between 1988 and 1994 before stepping down to work and family commitments.
Both his father Neil and grandfather were parish priests in the city and his mother’s family have lived in the area for many generations.
Mr Denlegh-Maxwell’s mother Anna was a magistrate for 25 years on the Worcester bench while his grandfather Roger Bertie Roberts was the grandson of John Corbett, also known as the Salt King. John Corbett represented Droitwich in Parliament for 17 years, was a great philanthropist of his day and did much to transform Droitwich, leaving an indelible print on the town.
Mr Denlegh-Maxwell’s roots extend further with connections to the Pakingtons and a picture of his ancestor, Sir John Pakington, can be found in the Guildhall.
Devastated Conservative and Worcester City Council leader Coun Marc Bayliss said: “I am deeply saddened by the loss of Stuart Denlegh-Maxwell.
“He was a man who served the city well in separate terms as a city councillor and he was loved and liked across the chamber.
“This is a huge loss for the people of Claines and the city as a whole.”
Since returning to the Guildhall, Coun Denlegh-Maxwell backed the calls for Basil D’Oliveira to be given the posthumous freedom of the city and last month proposed Coun Allah Ditta to serve as Mayor of Worcester.
Labour councillor and licensing chair Coun Richard Udall called off Monday’s meeting as a mark of respect and said: “Very sad news, we are all shocked and upset.”
“I knew Stuart for nearly 30 years; we often agreed on many issues, he was a gentleman with a unique and very dry sense of humour. I will miss him.”
Fellow Claines councillor Andy Stafford said: “I am shocked and deeply upset by Stuart’s sudden passing and I will miss him very much.
“We worked closely together on his election campaign and as ward colleagues, he was always positive, kind and compassionate.
“Stuart had so much more to give to Worcester, he was passionate about tackling homelessness and was hoping to serve as a future Mayor.
“He was a successful businessman and had a loving family. He will be missed by his many friends across the city, my heart goes out to his wife Cecilia and his family.”
Worcester Conservative Association tweeted: “Our dear friend and colleague Stuart has passed away.
“We are deeply saddened and our thoughts are with his family. Rest in peace Stuart, we will miss you.”