Former Norfolk County Council leader Cliff Jordan dies
The former leader of Norfolk County Council, Cliff Jordan, has died.
The news was confirmed in a statement from the authority this evening, barely three weeks after he stepped down following his diagnosis with lung cancer.
Politicians on all sides have united in tribute with many taking to social media to pay their respects.
Fellow Conservative Andrew Jamieson, who was first elected to County Hall last May, added: "I am very sad to hear of the passing of Cliff Jordan. A man whose one ambition was to improve the lives of those of us who live here and help guide Norfolk to a modern and forward looking future. I will miss his rough and ready optimism."
Independent Alexandra Kemp said that, despite their political disagreements, she had come to count him as a friend, adding: "A more sincere person and a truer gentleman you could not hope to meet.
"You could always rely on Cliff to tell you exactly what he thought; but he also had time for people, genuinely listened and tried to help.
"He was very forthright and never afraid to tell you, with breathtaking honesty, exactly where he thought you were going wrong. That could be quite a character-forming experience.
"But he got away with it, because he was kind, and you knew that he cared. His shoes will be very hard to fill at County Hall."
Labour's Mike Smith-Clare tweeted: "I was sad to hear the news of Cliff Jordan’s death. My condolences go to his family.
And Liberal Democrat Dan Roper posted: "I had plenty of disagreements with Cliff Jordan. But his version of a “quick chat” usually covered about ten subjects. So although we might disagree about nine of them we would usually end up having a laugh about the tenth."
Mr Jordan served as a councillor for 27 years, initially in Breckland before being elected to County Hall for the first time in 2001.
He led the Breckland Council from 1998 to 2005 and became county council leader in 2016.
When he announced his resignation from the latter role on May 18, he said: “I would like to thank each and every one of you for your dedication, support and friendship over my time serving in local government. During this time the Conservatives have achieved great things and I look forward to watching the seeds that we have sewn grow and prosper to make Norfolk the best it can be.
“I step down safe in the knowledge that we have charted the right course and I know that you will continue to share my vision for doing what’s best for the people of Norfolk."
Council officials say messages of condolence can be sent to the leader’s office, County Hall, Martineau Lane, Norwich, NR1 2DH and will be passed on to Mr Jordan’s family.