Tributes have been paid to long serving Croydon councillor Maggie Mansell who died after a short illness.

Councillor Mansell served the people of West Thornton and then Norbury as a Labour councillor representing the community for 25 years. 

A former scientist who often specialised in healthcare while sitting on the council, Cllr Mansell also served as Mayor of Croydon from 2005 to 2006 and was an ardent Palace fan.

In a tributes posted online, Thornton Heath councillor Karen Jewitt recalled their campaigning against Apartheid.

She said: “The first time I met Maggie in the 80’s she was wearing a free Mandela t-shirt, I thought now there is a kindred spirit! 

“She remained that person who fought for the underdog with all her might and did not give up till she got what she deemed as fairness.”

MP Steve Reed said: “She was passionate about the NHS and her beloved Norbury, and was campaigning right up to the end. She leaves such a big hole.”

 Thornton Heath Cllr Callton Young said: “Maggie was always looking out for me, even taking two days out of her busy schedule to drive me around Thornton Heath ward to ensure my selection there as a Labour candidate. 

“Her star will continue to shine brightly as a guide to many.”