A woman who campaigned to raise awareness of hepatitis C has died.

Brenda Binge passed away at the Royal Sussex County Hospital in Brighton after battling the disease for almost ten years.

Mrs Binge's husband Rod paid tribute to the 64-year-old, calling her a “real fighter.”

Mrs Binge, a former Mid Sussex district councillor, believed she contracted hepatitis C from a blood transfusion.

She was diagnosed in 2000 and was angry at the lack of information and support available at the time to people living with the condition, often nicknamed the “silent epidemic”.

She went on to set up a support group in Mid Sussex and campaigned for the Government to put money into treating the disease.

In an interview with The Argus in 2004 she said: “I had a blood test and that revealed I had hepatitis C. It came as a terrible shock.

“I didn't know much about it but soon found out how serious it could become.

“These toxins are poisoning me in side and there is a 50-50 chance the virus could kill me if and when it becomes fully active.”

Mrs Binge, of Broad Street, Cuckfield, developed serious liver problems as a result of her hepatitis and before her death medics had been considering whether she needed to have a transplant.

Her husband Rod said: “She always cared so much for other people and was a very popular councillor.

“I have already had a lot of letters from people saying how good she was and how much she helped them.

“She was a very special person and a real fighter. She had a lot of illnesses in her life but always kept going throughout.

“Anyone who knew her and wants to pay their respects are welcome to come to her funeral.”

Mrs Binge also leaves a daughter Fiona, and grandchildren Annabel, five, and Alex, one.

Her funeral takes place at the Surrey and Sussex Crematorium in Crawley on Wednesday at 11.15am.

Her relatives have asked for family flowers only but people can make a donation to the British Liver Trust.

Hepatitis C is believed to affect around 466,000 people in the UK.