Tributes to a stalwart councillor
ONE of Swindon’s longest serving councillors has died, sparking a flood of tributes from former colleagues and friends.
Stuart Macpherson was elected to Swindon Council in 1969 and served until 1988. Throughout his rein he stood as a Conservative member for the Old Town and Lawn wards.
In the 1970s, he took over the leadership of the council when a number of major redevelopments were taking place in the town.
The Macphersons have been hailed as an outstanding family in Swindon with three generations, stretching back to the 30s, serving the public.
Mr Macpherson’s son, Angus, is the first elected Police and Crime Commissioner for Wiltshire and Swindon and his granddad Charles also served as a councillor.
Fellow Conservative councillor Mike Bawden, who was deputy to Coun Macpherson during the 1970s, said he was an inspirational leader.
“He was a man with considerable vision and considerable drive,” said Coun Bawden who represents Chiseldon and Lawn wards.
“He considered himself a Swindonian and did everything that was possible to achieve the best things for the people of Swindon.”
Mr Macpherson had been in hospital for around two weeks but his condition deteriorated.
He was then rushed into intensive care, where he died yesterday.
While serving on the council he played a key role in bringing the Oasis and Link Centre to the town.
“He was a fantastic man,” said Coun Bawden. “A very clever man. He was the national president of the Round Table and anyone serving in that position has to be a man of considerable ability.”
Cross-party differences were put aside to praise the man who has achieved so much for the town. Labour councillor Derique Montaut, who represents the Liden, Eldene and Park South wards, said Mr Macpherson was a great man to work alongside.
“He took a lot of trouble to chat to me when I first became a councillor,” said Coun Montaut. “He was a fair person to deal with and he was a really nice guy. He was incredibly clever.”
Away from politics, Mr Macpherson worked as an optician at his family business, in Old Town, where his father worked before him.
It is not known at this stage when his funeral will be.