Farewell to a champion of the people of our county

He was one in a million, a true gentleman and, indeed, a gentle man who always had time for everyone in his community.

The passing of John Taylor yesterday has saddened all who knew him.

He was an exceptional councillor who went beyond the call of duty to understand the issues and worked tirelessly to help as many people as he could.

His fairness was legend and he stuck to his independent ideals, while all around him brought party politics into local government.

John will be best remembered for his work on various councils, but he was also an experienced and knowledgeable farmer, who had an unwavering passion for Northumberland.

He was a great supporter and friend of the Gazette, writing the AO Farmer column for many years. He knew the value of the local press in informing communities of the decisions being made in councils.

The Northumberland flag at County Hall will fly at half-mast until after John’s funeral – that speaks volumes about the regard and respect he commanded. Rest in peace, John.