Retired teacher and local historian Mr Steve Chapples has died aged 67.
A colourful character, Mr Chapples was brought up in the Pike Hill area of Burnley and had written several books on local history.
Described by one former pupil as a “maverick teacher”, Mr Chapples had taught French at Rhyddings High School, Oswaldtwistle. He attended Nelson Grammar School and also studied at the world famous Paris-Sorbonne University in 1968.
He had only recently returned from Australia where he had given away his daughter Lyndsey at her wedding.
His ex-wife Jenny, other daughter Sarah and his grandchildren all live in Australia.
Lyndsey said: “We are devastated. We went to a Hank Marvin gig in Perth and dad gave him his book on the Nelson Imp. That was typical of dad.”
Friend Mr Jez Aspin said: “Steve was an eccentric character. He wanted people to learn and was a natural teacher.
“He was an amazing linguist and grammarian. Steve was also a very talented chess player who worked as an arbiter setting up tournaments. He also loved music and enjoyed playing the guitar.”
Tributes from friends and former pupils have been placed on his Facebook page following news of his death.
A keen fan of 1960s music, perhaps his most popular book was his history of the famous Nelson Imperial Ballroom, copies of which were bought by stars who had graced the “Imp” in its heyday.
He also expanded on several books written by his late father Leslie, who worked as a linotype operator at the Burnley Express.