TRIBUTES have been paid to the former leader of Caerphilly county borough council who has died at the age of 80.

Harry Andrews MBE represented the Gilfach ward for more than 40 years, standing down as leader of the authority in 2014 to spend more tiem with his family.

He died on Tuesday March 27.

The council's current leader, Cllr Dave Poole, described the loss as a "very sad day" for Caerphilly and described Mr Andrews as an "outstanding public servant".

“He dedicated his life to local politics and always worked hard to represent the best interests of the community," said Cllr Poole.

"Harry’s legacy can be found in the transformation and regeneration of Bargoed and the surrounding areas, which he was instrumental and passionate in driving forward.”

“Local government has lost an influential figure and we have lost a good friend and colleague who will be sorely missed by all those who knew him.”

He added: “Our thoughts and sympathies are with his family at this difficult time."