Sir David Amess from the ITV News Anglia archive

Sir David Amess

Tory MP Sir David Amess has died after being stabbed several times while holding a constituency surgery in Leigh, police have confirmed.

On Friday, the Southend West MP was holding a surgery at the Belfairs Methodist Church, in Eastwood Road North, when a man ran into the church, according to the Southend Echo. The newspaper reported Mr Amess was then stabbed "several times".

Sir David had been an MP in Essex for 38 years, initially serving in Basildon from 1983 before he took on his role representing Southend West from 1997.

Across the years he spoke to ITV News Anglia on a number of issues.

In the late 1980s Sir David introduced a private members bill in Parliament following concerns about the number of stray ponies on Pitsea Marshes near Basildon.

On two separate occasions he was in attendance when records were broken. In 2005 and 2007 he hosted the largest gathering of centenarians. A dozen people aged 100 and over attended a tea party organised by Sir David - breaking a record in the process. He went on to organise another record breaking gathering of centenarians in 2007.

His colleagues described Sir David as a "true champion for Southend" and in 2006 Sir David was working to help a 76 year old widow who had been evicted from her home despite winning a court battle against her neighbour.

Sir David helped Melica Marcos from Leigh on Sea who was allowed back into her house 24 hours after being evicted - but faced huge legal bills.ITV News Anglia spoke to Melica Marcos and Sir David in this report.

In 2014 Sir David Amess was knighted for political and public service. He spoke to ITV News Anglia about the honour.