TRIBUTES have been paid to a Todmorden councillor who died last week.
Ian Cooper, who represented the Todmorden ward on Calderdale Council from 2008 until 2012 and was elected to the town council last year, passed away on August 9.
He had been battling cancer.
Calder Valley MP Craig Whittaker, a close friend and colleague of Coun Cooper, said he passed away peacefully surrounded by his family and friends.
“This is not just a sad personal loss of a wonderful friend but also a great loss to Todmorden and Calderdale,” Mr Whittaker said.
“Ian was a true friend and mentor to all who met him and he will be sadly missed by all those who knew him.
“Ian’s commitment, dedication and passion to our local area was immense and our area will be much the poorer for our loss.”
Coun Cooper, a retired businessman, lived in Eastwood, Todmorden.
In 2008 he became the first Conservative candidate to be elected in the Todmorden ward for nearly 30 years.
During his time on Calderdale Council, he delivered two new swimming pools for Calderdale; finished off the Shay Stadium in Halifax; and built and refurbished Hebden Bridge, King Cross and Brighouse libraries.
In 2011 he quit his role as planning committee chairman to concentrate on fighting the application to build a supermarket on the Halifax Road gateway site in Todmorden.
Todmorden town councillor David O’Neill said Coun Cooper was keen to promote Todmorden as a tourist destination.
He was also involved in the Todmorden Town Centre Renaissance Project and was a key member of the Todmorden Town Hall working party.
“He was a very conscientious man,” Coun O’Neill said.
“If somebody asked him a question, whether he could answer it or not, he would always say he would get back to you and do something about it.”
In May, Coun Cooper was elected Deputy Mayor of Todmorden but, due to ill health, was unable to attend functions.
“It’s sad because he would have been such a good representative of the town,” Coun O’Neill said.
Coun Cooper’s funeral will be held on Thursday, August 16, at Park Wood Crematorium, Elland, at 12.45pm, followed by a reception at the Masonic Lodge, Eastwood.