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‘An inspiration to us all’ – Tributes paid to SNP councillor Bob Band who died after lengthy illness

Councillor Bob Band.
Councillor Bob Band.

A long-standing Perth councillor has died after a brave cancer battle.

Former deputy provost Bob Band represented the SNP in the Perth City South ward for more than a decade.

The former Perth High pupil, who studied at Perth College during the 1970s, had always lived in the Perth city centre area.

As lifelong learning convener he was a driving force behind the recently opened Bertha Park High School, the first brand new school in Scotland this century.

In late 2018, Mr Band found out he had inoperable stomach cancer which had spread to his lungs and liver.

Despite his illness, Mr Band regularly attended Perth and Kinross Council meetings and events.

SNP group leader Grant Laing led the tributes, describing Mr Band as “one of life’s true gentlemen.”

“Bob Band was an incredibly decent man who was liked and admired by people from all political parties and by many officers and staff at the council,” he said.

“I shared a room with Bob for eight years and he was always a man you could turn to for advice.”

Mr Laing said: “Bob had a great sense of humour and this continued throughout his battle with his illness.

“My thoughts are for his family at this time, but there are many people who knew Bob as a colleague and friend that will be feeling his loss badly.”

The SNP’s Dave Doogan, who stood down as a Perth councillor and local party leader this year after becoming MP for Angus, said Mr Band was a “dear friend, role model and mentor who put the welfare of his constituents and the council above all other considerations” and also a “passionate advocate for Scotland’s independent future”.

He said: “Never a man with a sharp tongue or harsh word, Bob was an example of thoughtful pragmatism and stood ready to calm any room where necessary, or indeed mend fences as required.”

Mr Doogan added: “Even with the knowledge of the harsh fate that awaited him, Bob remained stoic, prominent and cheerful. He remains an inspiration to us all.”

Local business Pete Chan also paid tribute, highlighting work that Mr Band undertook to strengthen links with the local Chinese community.

Posting on social media, he wrote: “In my eyes, Perth has sadly lost one it’s greatest sons.”

Mr Band was first elected to council in 2007. During his time in office he was appointed to numerous roles including convener-ships of the licensing board, Tayside Fire and Rescue Board and the Local Review Board.

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