Tributes have been paid following the sudden death of the deputy leader of East Northants Council.
Cllr Glenn Harwood MBE, who represented the Higham Ferrers Lancaster ward and was deputy leader of the district council, has been described as ‘a giant of local East Northants politics’ following his death yesterday (Tuesday).
The district council flag has been lowered to half mast as a mark of respect.
Council leader Steven North said: “It is with deep sorrow that I have to issue a statement about the death of my friend and colleague Glenn Harwood.
“We are stunned by his sudden death and our thoughts are with his family at this difficult time.
“I worked with Glenn, for over five years as deputy leader and his knowledge, compassion and sense of humour made him a great friend, colleague and councillor.
“He was never afraid to stand up for what he believed in and represented the people of East Northamptonshire and, in particular, the ward of Higham Lancaster with passion and a sound sense of public duty.
“Today we mourn the loss of a true friend of this council and of the district of East Northamptonshire.”
Cllr North said he was incredibly shocked to learn of Cllr Harwood’s death, having been to his house only last Thursday where he had given him a pheasant as he liked to shoot.
He said Cllr Harwood was an ‘absolute professional’ with many qualities, including never being late for anything.
Cllr North added: “He didn’t hold grudges, he got his point across and he was strong if he needed to be.
“He was also very supportive.
“He stood in for me when required and he would just get on with it.
“He got everyone onside.”
Cllr Harwood served on numerous committees on the council and fought for the issues affecting the people he represented.
The council leader said: “When he took something on, he gave it 110 per cent.
“He spent many years on planning, supporting his residents, and he was digging into the chicken farm issue with his district hat.
“He was also taking county colleagues to task over the proposed library closures.”
Cllr North said Glenn ‘relished life’ and described him as an ‘absolutely fantastic’ deputy leader before adding: “I am not sure I will get over his passing.”
MP for Corby and East Northants Tom Pursglove has also paid tribute to Cllr Harwood in a tweet posted last night.
He said: “Absolutely devastated to hear of the sad passing of my friend and colleague, Glenn Harwood MBE.
“A giant of local East Northants politics, served his country with distinction, a friend and ally to many, and a great personal support to me.
“Glenn, we’ll miss you enormously. RIP.”
A tweet posted by Wellingborough MP Peter Bone yesterday (Tuesday) said: “Deeply sorry to learn of the unexpected and untimely death of my dear colleague and friend, Cllr Glen Harwood MBE.
“He served his country with distinction before becoming a superb local councillor.
“I will be saying more in Parliament tomorrow, but may his soul rest in peace.”