The former Mayor of Hertsmere who passed away last week has been described as the “perfect gentleman.”

Ex-councillor John Franklin, who served as Mayor from 1980 to 1981, died peacefully at a nursing home in Baldock after a long battle with cancer on Friday.

The retired building executive was a borough councillor for Bushey Heath in the 1980s.

His son, Mark, 53, says the family are “devastated” about his death.

He added: “He was a very kind, generous and caring man. He always had a strong sense of public duty, so he loved being Mayor.

“He was also very sociable, and really enjoyed spending time with family and friends.”

The keen golfer, who also played for Harrow Rugby Club in his younger days, is survived by his wife, Jane. They moved to Baldock, Hertfordshire, in 2006 after living in Bushey for 50 years.

The couple also had another son, Nigel, 50, and four grandchildren, Jack, 24, Katy, 21, Lucy, nine and Leo, seven.

Councillor Brenda Batten took over Mr Franklin’s seat in 1980 and has fond memories of the man she called her mentor.

“He helped me enormously when I first started out as a young councillor and I’ll always be grateful to him for that.

“He really was the perfect gentleman and was respected by everyone. Nobody had a bad word to say about him.”

The flag at Bushey Golf Club is flying half mast in honour of Mr Franklin.

Services will be held at Garston Crematorium, on Tuesday, July 17 at 4pm.