Family and friends have said goodbye to well-loved Gosforth novelist, Keith Wilson.

Keith John Wilson died at Hereford County Hospital in Herefordshire, following a long and difficult battle with cancer, at the age of 88.

The retired Sellafield employee was born in Northampton and moved to Gosforth for his job, staying there most of his working life from 1968 to 1995.

Gosforth was Keith and his family’s home, where he and his late wife Carole raised their two children, Adrian and Amanda, and became active in village life.

The family man spent time as vice-chairman of Gosforth Parish Council, but was also stage manager for many of Gosforth Amateur Dramatic Society’s productions throughout the 1970s and ’80s.

Keith considered his time living in West Cumbria as the happiest time of his life, often asking “where else in the world would I rather be?”, and even spent the endless winter evenings researching and writing his book, Letters From The Past.

The historical novel was published in 2013, and has been sold worldwide.

Although he and his family moved to Herefordshire in 1995, where the Lake District-lover worked as a debt adviser with Citizens Advice Bureau Hereford for 18 years, Keith never stopped missing his home of Gosforth.

The caring grandfather founded a Herefordshire Investment Club, and was treasurer at Caring for God’s Acre – a charity dedicated to the preservation of churchyards and burial grounds.

Keith loved every second of his retirement, and spent his time travelling and being with the ones he loved most, and always remained close with his friends from West Cumbria, particularly Joan Capp MBE, founder and chairman of Bootle Refugee Aid.

Proud son Adrian said: “He leaves his children, grandchildren – and countless friends.”