The photo of him here is taken from his Twitter profile.
From Gazette Live:
A prominent figure in local Liberal Democrat politics for more than 40 years, he represented Newcomen ward, in Redcar , where he lived.
The 66-year-old lifelong Leeds fan and electrician was also chairman of Yorkshire Ridings Society.
Paying tribute, Josh Mason, leader of Redcar and Cleveland Liberal Democrat group, said: “Chris was a bastion of local democracy and a lifelong liberal, whose knowledge, passion and dedicated community work, have been an inspiration to us all.
“Redcar and Cleveland Council will be a lesser place without his principled values, commitment and tireless efforts for local people.
On behalf of Redcar Liberal Democrats, I offer sincere condolences to Chris’ family and to all who knew him, as we mourn together, the loss of a dear friend
Chris was one of the stalwarts of the early online Lib Dem Conferencing system, Cix and his blog was a brilliant mix of local news and commentary.
I know that many of you will be sad to hear this news. Please feel free to share memories of Chris in the comments.
All of us at LDV send condolences to Chris’s friends and family.
Ian Swales, the former Liberal Democrat MP for Redcar, wrote this on his Facebook page and it is reproduced here with his permission:
Pat and I are very sad that our friend and Lib Dem colleague Chris Abbott has died suddenly.
He was a truly outstanding Liberal Democrat being a personal inspiration to us and many others. His work for the party and in the community will never be forgotten.
This is the obituary sent to the local press:
He served as an elected Councillor since the 1970’s and was the current Deputy Mayor of Redcar and Cleveland. He has been a tower of strength working tirelessly for the Local Party and the residents of Newcomen ward.
Every local election success in the constituency was a result of his pioneering example in the 1985 Cleveland County Council election win. He showed us the way. He used his experience to support newly elected Councillors and was Ian Swales’s agent during his 2005 and successful 2010 General Election campaigns.
Raised in Harrogate Chris started as a town Councillor in Whitby in the 1970’s and stood in Hartlepool in the 1979 General Election. Since then he has been a Borough and County Councillor in Redcar and supported so many others into office acting as agent for many years. Along with Stan Wilson he kept the Local Party going through some dark times in the 1980’s and he stood for Parliament in Redcar in 1992. From 2003 to 2007 he was a Cabinet Member for Housing and Regeneration during the Lib Dem Conservative coalition and also spent many years serving on the Cleveland Police Authority. His experience and devotion to residents led to Ian Swales appointing him as a caseworker in his office when he was first elected as a Member of Parliament.
He has done the party’s leaflet printing for many years and, along with his dear late wife Glynis, was always amongst the first to turn up to action days and by-election campaigns. His work and influence also extended into other parts of the North East and he served on the national Conference Committee.
* Caron Lindsay is Editor of Liberal Democrat Voice and blogs at Caron's Musings