Former Government minister Sir Eldon Griffiths has died at the age of 89.
Sir Eldon was MP for Bury St Edmunds from 1964 to 1992 and was made Freeman of the Borough of St Edmundsbury in 2007.
His son Cllr John Griffiths, leader of St Edmundsbury Borough Council, said: “A very bright light flickered and then went out earlier this morning.
“Not just for me and the rest of my family but for so many others whose lives my father touched.”
In July last year, aged 88, Sir Eldon married his long-standing friend Susan Donnell in Bury St Edmunds.
At the time he said: “People are as old as they feel and I don’t feel old.
“I always remember the famous remark: old age is always 15 years older than what you are.”
John added: “He will, I trust, be remembered not just for his many achievements but, more importantly, perhaps, for making life better for a multitude of people of all ages, walks of life and nationality.
“My father was an exceptional man and enjoyed an extraordinarily full, and active life to the very end.
“And while he was really a ‘citizen of the world’ which he travelled so extensively, there is nowhere that he cared about more than this country, West Suffolk and Bury St Edmunds, in particular.
“He was so pleased to be able to make it back here – to the part of the world and the people he loved most – to rest for, possibly, the first but also the last time.”
Matthew Hancock, West Suffolk MP, said this evening: “For nearly 30 years, Sir Eldon was an extraordinary political figure who made his mark both here in West Suffolk and elsewhere in the world.
“He led a fascinating life and I’m sure will be remembered for his wonderful character and his huge achievements in British politics. He has left behind a great legacy.”