A LEADING councillor who battled for community services has died after a short battle with cancer.

Councillor Anna Mackison was waste and contracted services chief at Wychavon District Council where she had served since her election in May 2003. She was 64.

George Mackison, her husband of 44 years, said: “We were all immensely proud of what she did.”

Always forthright, Coun Mackison touched colleagues in her final days by saying goodbye, despite being seriously ill, at a senior leadership team meeting at the civic centre in Pershore last week.

Her background was farming and she helped many constituents after the floods of 2007 with her “hands-on” approach. As waste and recycling chief she introduced wheelie bins to Wychavon and steered the merger of the county’s regulatory services departments.

She was chairman of Elmley Castle, Bricklehampton and Netherton village hall committee – having led the fund-raising campaign to have a new hall built – and represented the ward, where she had lived for 30 years, as district councillor.

She found time to be a director of charities and had her own jewellery-making business. Mr Mackison said his wife – “the boss” – always found time for constituents and had a passion for public service and “getting it right”.

“She never shouted and always took advice and did her research when she didn’t know the answer. She cared for the community, that drove her on.”

He praised the NHS district, Macmillan and St Richard’s Hospice nursing teams for their help in the last days. Days before her death at home on Friday, March 18, she was still answering constituents’ phonecalls.

Jack Hegarty, district council managing director, said she was “brilliant to work with, always made time for the staff and was always striving to do the very best for the people she represented.”

Her funeral is at St Mary’s Church in Elmley Castle at 2pm on Wednesday. Family flowers only, with donations to Macmillan Cancer Support and St Richards’ Hospice.

She is survived by her husband, children April and Philip and four grandchildren.