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A minute's silence has been held in memory of Sandwell Council leader Darren Cooper who died suddenly on Saturday.
Hundreds of employees gathered outside Oldbury Civic Square to pay their respects. The 52-year-old had been a councillor for Soho and Victoria in Smethwick since 1991, and became council leader in 2009. A book of condolence has also been opened at the council house.
The Deputy Leader of Sandwell Council, Steve Eling has said he's not surprised by how many people turned up to pay tribute to Cooper.
A minute's silence has been held in memory of Darren Cooper, the Sandwell Council leader who died on Saturday aged 52.
He had represented the Soho and Victoria ward in Smethwick since May 1991 and became Leader of Sandwell Council in December 2009.
The Sandwell Council Leader, Darren Cooper, has been described as 'one of the most important labour leaders in Britain' by Jeremy Corbyn.
The Labour Party leader joined other politicians who have paid tribute to the 52-year-old, after he died suddenly on Saturday night.
Mr Cooper had been a councillor for Soho and Victoria in Smethwick since 1991, and became council leader in 2009. Hannah Gamlin reports.
The Leader of the Labour Party, Jeremy Corbyn, has paid tribute to the Leader of Sandwell Council Darren Cooper, who had died at the age of 52.
Our movement is diminished by the loss of Cllr Darren Cooper. Condolences to his family & friends. My full tribute: https://t.co/6dte3FydbJ
“Darren’s contribution to Sandwell and the Black Country is immeasurable. A councillor for nearly twenty five years and leader of Sandwell Council since 2009, he was one of the most important Labour Leaders in Britain. He was a huge talent - he fought for Labour values to get the best for the people that he served so diligently in Sandwell. Our movement is diminished by his loss and his experience, charisma and leadership will be sorely missed. On behalf of the Labour Party I would like to express our deepest sympathies to his family at this extremely sad time.”
Former Prime Minister Tony Blair has paid tribute to Councillor Darren Cooper, Leader of Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council, who passed away yesterday, aged 52.
Darren Cooper was one of Labour’s most committed and passionate local government leaders of the last twenty years and stood resolute in his support for the people of Sandwell.
A long-serving councillor, he worked diligently to implement Labour’s core values of social justice and equality of opportunity despite the huge challenges faced by local government over the last few years.
My deepest sympathies are with Darren’s family, friends and colleagues at this very difficult time.
Tributes to Sandwell council leader Darren Cooper have poured in this afternoon after the news of his death was announced by the council.Read the full story ›
The leader of the Sandwell Council, Darren Cooper died last night, the council has announced. He was 52.
Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council have issued a statement saying: "It is with great sadness that we confirm the death of the Leader of Sandwell Council, Councillor Darren Cooper who died last night."
Councillor Darren Cooper had represented the Soho and Victoria ward in Smethwick since May 1991 and became Leader of Sandwell Council in December 2009.
Deputy Leader, Councillor Eling will now assume the role of Leader of Sandwell Council, in accordance with council procedures, said the council in a statement issued today.
This is of course a terrible shock to everyone who knew Darren.
He was hugely liked and respected by both his colleagues at the council and the constituents who he was dedicated to serving.
Our thoughts and condolences are with his wife and family and we ask on their behalf that their privacy be respected at this extremely sad and difficult time.
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