TRIBUTES have been flooding in for a former councillor who has died after battling dementia.

David Paton was a Conservative councillor with East Lothian District Council and well-known campaigner for his community of Cockenzie and Port Seton.

The retired potato merchant, who ran local business Thomas Paton and Sons, turned 90 last month and had lived with dementia for five years.

His wife Barbara said David passed away at home on Sunday, March 15; however, his funeral, which is planned for Wednesday, April 1, faces restrictions due to the coronavirus crisis.

The family are planning to hold a memorial at a later date.

Hundreds of people have paid tribute to Mr Paton on social media after his granddaughter shared the news.

Many remembered him as a “true gentleman” and a “guid man”; others recalled his campaign to try to save the community’s open-air pool, the Pond Hall, from demolition.

Barbara said: “He was a valued member of the community and was all about helping other people. He touched so many lives and I am grateful for everyone’s kind wishes.”

Barbara and David were married for more than 30 years and he was stepfather to her two sons, Calum and Lindsay, and daughter Heather, as well as grandfather to eight grandchildren.

An elder at Chalmers Memorial Church in Port Seton, David served on the community council and was also a member of Longniddry District Rotary Club. It is unlikely David’s funeral  can be held in the church he loved.

Barbara said: “At this stage it seems unlikely we will have a church service, which is sad because David was an elder at Chalmers Church and would have wanted it. We’re not sure what will happen yet.”

She sent special thanks to the carers who looked after her husband in recent times, saying: “David was able to remain at home and passed away here because of the amazing work of our carers. They were fantastic.”

David is also survived by two sisters, Jessie and Mary.