A FORMER Lord Mayor of Oxford who was passionate about helping others and retained a vast knowledge of the area he represented has died aged 79.

Pat Stannard, who died on Friday, was a technician who represented his home of Blackbird Leys on Oxford City Council and also sat on the estate’s parish council.

Mr Stannard was born in Colchester on October 6, 1938, and moved with his family to a home off Abingdon Road in Oxford, when he was two.

He had a younger brother, Terry, who now lives in Devon.

His father died when he was young, leaving Mr Stannard with increased responsibilities when it came to taking care of the family – an experience that would inform his politics.

Mr Stannard was educated at what is now Oxford Spires Academy in Glanville Road.

He left school at the age of 16 and went straight to work as a technician at the Atomic Energy Research Establishment in Harwell.

After spending about a decade working in Harwell he moved to the Department of Engineering Science at Oxford University.

Mr Stannard was initially a lab technician and later filled the role of safety officer, which would see him through until requirement.

He held the latter job, which involved ensuring everything met health and safety regulations, for nearly 40 years.

In the late 1960s or early 1970s, Mr Stannard, who was also, for a time, a trade union member, met Angela at a party.

The two married in 1971 and had two children; Nick and Joanna. They divorced in 1997.

Joanna, who was known as Jo, passed away in 2014.

It is believed that Mr Stannard joined the Labour

Party in the 1980s as a result of reforms being enacted by Margaret Thatcher.

It was this political interest that led him to become a councillor.

Mr Stannard, who moved to Greater Leys in 1998, sat on Oxford City Council as the representative for Blackbird Leys.

The highlight of his time in politics came in 2003 when he was made Lord Mayor of Oxford.

He is remembered as somebody who was keen about helping others where possible. He was also known for being incredibly knowledgeable about the area.

In his free time, Mr Stannard got a great deal of enjoyment from cars.

He was good at fixing cars thanks to his engineering skills and bought a series of Alfa Romeos.

Mr Stannard was a keen dog walker in later life. He was also an avid reader who was interested in 20th century history.

A funeral will be held at Oxford Crematorium at midday on April 23.