WARM tributes have been paid to long-serving Monmouthshire councillor Peter Clarke following his death earlier this week.

Cllr Clarke, who served as an elected member of Monmouthshire County Council since it was founded in 1996, died on Monday aged 78 following a short illness.

Well-known for running the Glen-Yr-Afon House Hotel with his wife Jan, Cllr Clarke was described as “a pillar of the community” in Usk by Monmouthshire council.

Paying tribute on Twitter, council leader, Cllr Richard John said: “County councillor for Llangybi since the 1980s, he was the father of our council and will be dearly missed by so many in Monmouthshire.

“A life lived to the full and a great loss to us.”

A minute’s silence was held at a meeting of Monmouthshire council’s planning committee on Wednesday to remember Cllr Clarke.

Cllr Ruth Edwards, chairwoman of the committee, said: “Peter was a kind man, dedicated, sensitive in many ways, passionate and thoughtful.

“He liked to keep good standards and expected this from others.

“Firm but fair, as he was in his very successful business. I will miss him very much personally and remember him fondly.”

A tribute has also been paid on behalf of staff at The Glen yr Afon and Three Salmons Hotel in Usk.

The Glen-Yr-Afon was bought by Cllr Clarke and his wife, alongside another couple, in 1973, opening its doors as a business the following year and since welcoming thousands of customers.

In 2010, The Glen yr Afon, together with Brendan Dean, purchased the Three Salmons Hotel, where Cllr Clarke worked until the Covid-19 lockdown.

In a statement, staff at the two hotels said: “Peter – you lived your life to the full.

“The laughs and pranks that we have enjoyed over the years are just too numerous to mention, it made the hotels enjoyable places to work.

“We shall continue to follow the standards you set, as the hotels move on with many happy memories of you.”

Monmouth MP David Davies said Cllr Clarke was “a hugely respected councillor and dedicated champion for his local community of Llangybi”.

Petr Fox, member of the Senedd for Monmouth, paid tribute to “an outstanding public servant who will be sorely missed”.

Paul Matthews, Monmouthshire council chief executive, said: “I will miss Peter greatly.

“A ‘gentle’man in every way. A source of great counsel, wisdom and kindness.”

Cllr Sara Jones, the council’s deputy leader, said: “Privileged to have known and worked alongside Peter.

“A gentleman, with a wicked sense of humour and a kind heart – always had time to chat, and was a loyal friend.

“He will be missed by us all.”

Cllr Clarke, who was still a serving councillor representing the Llangybi Fawr ward, was first elected to public office in 1989, representing the Usk rural ward on the former Gwent Council.