Pendle Lord and former teacher was a 'true people's champion'

Tributes from across the political spectrum have been paid to a bastion of Pendle poltics, Lord Tony Greaves, who died at home this week.

Wednesday, 24th March 2021, 12:30 pm
Lord Tony Greaves

The Liberal Democrat peer and Colne councillor left an indelible imprint on local and national politics over many years, representing the people of Pendle not only at Nelson Town Hall, but also in the House of Lords.

His good friend and fellow Pendle Lib Dem, Coun. David Whipp, led the tributes following Tony's shock death at the age of 78 on Tuesday.

Coun. Whipp said: "More than anyone, Tony shaped Pendle in over 50 years of service to the residents he represented as a Liberal campaigner and councillor. He fought indefatigably for people in Colne and the wider borough. Tony was a true peoples' champion.

"Tony has been a friend for over 40 years. He guided me when I was first elected as a young councillor and has been a close colleague ever since. He was passionate and principled. Tony was uncompromising, but sought consensus and the common ground in the council chamber.

"Tony came here to teach geography at Colne Grammar School and there are hundreds of people who remember him fondly from the classroom and Tony remembered his former pupils, too.

"Tony's passing will leave a gaping hole in all our lives. My thoughts are with Heather, Vicky and Helen."

Before his time on Pendle Council, Tony was a councillor for Colne Borough Council and was a member of Lancashire County Council for 25 years.

The leader of Pendle Council, Coun. Mohammed Iqbal, said: "Whilst we were on different political parties I respected Tony as his heart and passion for Pendle were always at the forefront of his mind.

"We had a conversation yesterday evening and I was extremely shocked to hear the sad news conveyed to me. My heartfelt condolences go to Tony’s family, especially his wife Heather. He will not be forgotten - RIP Tony."

Pendle's Conservative MP Andrew Stephenson, with whom Lord Greaves jostled politically on many occasions, also paid his respects.

He said: "I’m saddened to hear the news about the sudden death of Lord Greaves. My thoughts and prayers are with his family at this time."

And the Tory leader of the Pendle Conservative group, Coun. Nadeem Ahmed, paid tribue.

“My heartfelt condolences go out to Tony’s family, including his wife Heather, daughters Vicky and Helen, and grandson Robin," he said.