Well known retired Barnstaple teacher and staunch Liberal Democrat Brian Macbeth will be greatly missed by all who knew him.

Brian died peacefully at Swimbridge House Nursing Home aged 70 on Saturday, June 15.

He leaves his wife Sue, sons Ian and David and grandson Jacob.

Many people around Barnstaple will remember being taught by Brian as he was a geography teacher at Park School for much of his career.

Of Scottish descent, he went to university in Leeds and became involved with the Liberals there, going on to be a dedicated member, campaigner and agent for the party.

It remained a big part of his life and he served for many years as a councillor for the Newport ward on both North Devon District and Barnstaple Town councils.

Brian was also a rugby man - a keen supporter and member of Barnstaple Rugby Club, where one of his sons played.

Paying tribute to Brian, former North Devon MP Nick Harvey said: "After retiring early from teaching, he served a long stint as my political manager in North Devon as well as organising general and local election campaigns for me and other Lib Dem candidates.

"Brian will be greatly missed by his former teaching and political colleagues and friends.

"He had a shrewd and strategic political mind, clear communications skills honed as a teacher and greatly welcome in producing political literature, and a great mind for figures.

"He swiftly saw through people with airs and pretensions, but was kind, genial, witty, thoughtful and supportive.

Always in the thick of the action with his sleeves rolled up for work, he was respected and greatly liked as a good team player.

"It is sad that illness robbed him of the long and relaxing retirement he had done so much to earn and deserve. Our thoughts are with Sue, Ian and David at this sad time."

Fellow Lib Dem colleague and councillor Ian Roome added: "Brian was not only a Liberal Democrat councillor for many years but he did a lot for the local community.

"Recently he raised hundreds of pounds by writing a book named Barnstaple, The story of the Forgotten Engine.

"My thoughts are with his family and friends at this sad time."

A Service of Thanksgiving for Brian's life will be held on Monday, July 1 at 2.30pm at Christ Church in Bear Street - Brian had asked for all attending to wear bright colours. Donations can be made for the Over and Above cancer and wellbeing centre appeal on the day or c/o WS Gayton and Son at Bickington.