Tributes paid to ‘gentleman’ councillor

Councillor John Duncan.
Councillor John Duncan.

Following the sad news of the passing of Councillor John Duncan, elected members from across Aberdeenshire Council have paid tribute to their colleague.

The Conservative councillor for the Troup ward, who was in his 80s, died on his way home after attending a meeting of the council’s Social Work and Housing Committee last Thursday.

Leader of Aberdeenshire Council, Jim Gifford, offered his condolences to Cllr Duncan’s family and friends.

Cllr Gifford said: “He’s always just been the nicest guy and of all the tributes that have come through so far, one thing that really comes through again and again is that he was a true gentleman.

“He got on with everybody but was also quite happy to make his opinion known, which he did regularly.

“He hadn’t been well for a while, but insisted on trying to do as much as he could. I saw him yesterday after committee and he was full of beans, as healthy as I’d seen him for a while.

“He was doing what he absolutely loved to do right up to the last minute, which was work away on council business on behalf of the folk who elected him and he will be sadly missed by anyone who knew him.”

Provost of Aberdeenshire Jill Webster said: “I’m very sad to hear of John’s passing, he was a respected colleague and a hardworking representative of his community who understood local issues and strived to help his constituents.

“He will be sorely missed and my thoughts are with his family and friends.”

Councillor Duncan, a retired farmer, was elected to the Troup ward following a by-election in 2002.

The father of two sons and one daughter, and a proud grandparent, Cllr Duncan was active in his community.

Leader of the SNP Group Hamish Vernal said: “On behalf of our group I am sorry to hear this sad news. I knew John for many years as an officer and councillor colleague – he was always a gentleman.

“My thoughts are with his family at this time.”

Deputy Provost and Central Buchan councillor Norman Smith said: “This is a sad loss for the council.

“John was an excellent councillor, a quiet man and a real gentleman.

“He always had plenty of time for everybody. He will be sadly missed by the council.”

The flag at Woodhill House is flying at half-mast in Councillor Duncan’s memory.