Statement from Middlesbrough Mayor Ray Mallon regarding the death of Sir Stuart Bell. He said:
“To say that I am shocked to learn of Sir Stuart’s death would be a considerable understatement, and my thoughts are with his wife Margaret and the whole family.
“I have known Stuart Bell for more than ten years, and I since I became elected Mayor we have supported one another through thick and thin.
“He has done a great deal for me personally and for the town as a whole, and it is common knowledge that I held him in the highest regard.
“He was extremely personable and knowledgeable, and I will not forget how much I enjoyed seeing and listening to him.”
More top news
A former Premier League footballer has been cleared of raping a woman he met in a nightclub.
72-year-old Arthur Bierton from Thirsk was convicted at Teesside Crown Court of abusing two young girls in the 1980s and 90s.
Flying Officer Cameron James Forster and Flying Officer Ajvir Singh Sandhu were killed in a plane crash in North Yorkshire.