Tributes have been paid to a long-time Wandsworth councillor and Second World War hero.

Gordon Passmore was among forty war veterans presented with an Arctic Star by the then-Prime Minister David Cameron in 2013 in recognition of his contribution.

As a pilot in the Fleet Air Arm he provided air cover to convoys and warships against the constant threat from German U-boats, aircraft and surface raiders when the Arctic convoys began shipping vitally needed war supplies to the Soviet Union between 1941 and 1945.

The convoys - branded the “worst journey in the world” by Winston Churchill – saw the deaths of more than 3,000 Royal Navy sailors and merchant seamen during the perilous voyage to the northern Russian ports of Murmansk and Archangel.

As well as the Arctic convoys, Mr Passmore also saw active service on operations in the North Atlantic, the Mediterranean, the Indian Ocean and the Pacific. Towards the end of the war he survived being shot down and ditching in the sea 1,000 miles north of New Guinea, before being rescued by a Royal Navy destroyer.

Mr Passmore had also served Wandsworth as an elected councillor for 46 years, being voted in in a by-election in Putney in 1960. He retired as a councillor for Northcote ward in Battersea ahead of the 2006 local elections and is the only person to have served as Mayor of Wandsworth three times.

He was awarded an MBE for his services to local government in 1997.

In 2007 he was made a Freeman of the Borough of Wandsworth and throughout his time as a councillor played an active role in local charities and voluntary groups, as well as serving as a school governor.

Wandsworth council leader Ravi Govindia said: “It is with great sadness that we have learned of Gordon’s passing. He was a remarkable man who achieved so much in a long and illustrious life.

“Although today is tinged with a huge amount of sadness we are also reminded of how lucky we were to know and work alongside a man of Gordon’s great strength and character. He was a deeply principled and honourable man who never tired of fighting for what he believed in.

“Gordon’s entire life was dedicated to public service. After his extraordinary record of 46 years of service at the town hall, it is difficult to overstate his remarkable contribution to public life in our borough.”