TRIBUTES have flooded in for a popular former councillor described as “a lovely man who will leave a massive hole in the local community”.

John Adams, who served on Newhaven Town Council for four years from May 2007, died of a heart attack after collapsing at the Crown Carvery, Peacehaven, while visiting the restaurant with friends.

The 72-year-old, of Newhaven Heights, had led Newhaven In Bloom for the past few years, helping to create many of the floral displays in the town.

Tracey Buchan, Mr Adams’ daughter, said: “I’m very, very proud of him.

“He was totally selfless and would do anything for anybody and did not expect anything in return.”

Judith Ost, mayor of Newhaven, said: “He was a leading light in Newhaven In Bloom and when he saw that the railings at the harbour needed repainting he went to the harbour authority to ask for the paint and did it himself. That’s the sort of man he was.

“He was gentle, practical, down to earth and just a nice guy.”

Mr Adams died on July 13 and leaves behind his wife Cindy, his two daughters Tracey and Wendy, and five grandchildren.

Sally Foote, senior worker at the Newhaven Community Development Association, where Mr Adams was a trustee member for a number of years, described him as “a lovely man who will leave a massive hole in the community”.

She said: “I can’t even begin to say how much he will be missed and what the town will be like without him.”

Newhaven Town Council held a one-minute silence for Mr Adams.

Violet Tully, 87, of Newhaven Heights, who knew Mr Adams for more than 50 years, said: “Newhaven won’t be the same without him. He did everything he could for the community.”

Mr Adams’ funeral took place this month at Woodvale Crematorium, Brighton.