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Eric Hobbs dies, by-election planned

Eric Hobbs dies, by-election planned

One of North Shore City's most colourful politicians, Eric Hobbs, died yesterday at his Birkdale home and colleagues say his community lost a valuable advocate.

Mr Hobbs had been a member of the Birkenhead-Northcote Community Board since 1992 and was the board's deputy chairperson and works committee chairperson at the time of his death. The council's flags fly at half mast in his honour.

Born in England, Mr Hobbs was employed as a drainage serviceman at Techscape Ltd, the Albany-based contracting company jointly owned by North Shore City and Waitakere City Councils. His service began 35 years ago working for the former Birkenhead City Council based at Beach Haven.

Jennifer Yorke, chairperson of the Birkenhead-Northcote Community Board and a friend of Mr Hobbs, says Eric Hobbs was a hardworking, loyal and valuable advocate.

"His wicked sense of humour, extensive knowledge of history and the planet, together with his compassion for the underdog, ensured that Eric has left this community much richer for his being here.

"He attended an average of two meetings each week - mostly on a volunteer basis - and was always helping to increase funding for these groups. His well worn shoes - or should I say gumboots - will be very difficult to fill," Ms Yorke says.

A by-election will be held to fill the vacancy.

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