A passionate former councillor and family man has died peacefully at his home aged 69.
Roger Roberts became chairman of the Young Conservative Association in his hometown of Pudsey at the age of 15 and spent his life fighting for the communities in which he lived.
He met his wife, Pauline, at a cycling club dinner and the two were married in 1967 in Horsforth. Mr Roberts was a transport manager before joining Storemasters in Birstall in 1971.
Mr and Mrs Roberts then became licensees of the Black Bull in Batley for one year before taking over the Flowerpot in Mirfield from 1974-1992. “Those were the most wonderful years,” said Mrs Roberts. “We met some wonderful people.”
Mr Roberts was chairman of Spenborough Licensed Victuallers Association, helping other licensees with problems. “He would help anybody,” said Mrs Roberts. “He cared passionately about the areas he lived in. He did a lot for the community.”
Mr Roberts became a Mirfield Conservative councillor for Kirklees in the 1980s. He briefly represented the British National Party in Heckmondwike before leaving the party and joining the English Democrats. He was also a councillor for Mirfield Town Council.
Mrs Roberts said: “Issues like health and education were very close to his heart. He wanted the best for the next generation. He was a man of his word and wasn’t afraid of speaking his mind.”
She added: “He was also a great family man. This is something people he knew professionally or politically wouldn’t see – he adored his family.
Mr Roberts had two children, Elizabeth and Karl, and five grandchildren.
His daughter Elizabeth said: “He was passionate and committed to his views and his family but he was also fun.” Mr Roberts enjoyed walking, gardening, rugby and cricket and had a love of steam trains. He often took his family on steam train trips throughout the country and on holidays in Europe. “We had so much fun and met a lot of friends along the way,” said Mrs Roberts. “He was such a gifted man. Everybody who met him would never forget him.”
Mr Roberts’ funeral takes place on Friday September 13 at Dewsbury Crematorium, 2pm.