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A tribute to Councillor Paul James

15/04/2019 12:00

Councillor Paul James sadly passed away on Thursday 11th April 2019

Paul was very much at the heart of the Mid and West Wales Fire and Rescue Service family and a great friend to many of us.

Paul first became a member of the Fire Authority in 2004 and was the longest serving member of the Fire Authority. From taking an active role as Leader of the Coalition Alliance Group to being a regular visitor to the Stations of Ceredigion, he worked with great enthusiasm and energy on behalf of us all.

Paul was a friend and a colleague who always had the best interests of others at heart. On numerous occasions, he would participate in extraordinary physically demanding feats to support our firefighters in raising money for charities, which included climbing Snowdon in full PPE kit and Breathing Apparatus, to cycling around Wales. He was currently fundraising for the Dyfi Ward Cardiac Monitoring Unit at Bronglais Hospital and the Cyril Evans Ward and Cardio-Thoracic HDU at Morriston, where he was treated for a heart condition.

I have read many moving tributes to Paul over the past few days, all of which have brought a smile to my face. I’m unable to better articulate Elin Jones AM’s comments, that he was indeed a ‘larger than life’ individual and a ‘work of art’ who put his family first, ‘then his residents and then all the rest of us’. I remember at a recent Fire Authority meeting, Cllr James interrupted the meeting, so he could take a Skype call from a friend the other side of the world. He had time for everyone.

Paul’s history was indeed a ‘work of art’. Serving in the military, before serving his community as a Councillor and then the communities of mid and west Wales as a Member of the Fire Authority.

I would like to extend our deepest sympathies to Paul’s family, colleagues and friends during this difficult time.

Cysga’n dawel Paul.

Deputy Chief Fire Officer Roger Thomas