A crown court judge has paid tribute to a journalist and former town mayor who died after collapsing at a social club.
Gareth Evans , who died on Friday, became a freelance court reporter in Mold following a career spent in Welsh newspapers and with the Reuters news agency in London.
He was taken unwell while enjoying a drink at the Bryn Griffith Social Club in High Street, Mold, and despite medical attention died shortly afterwards.
Gareth, who was in his 70s, was the first journalist to cover Mold Crown Court when it opened and news of his passing prompted a tribute from judge Niclas Parry as he opened proceedings there yesterday.
Judge Parry said: “I think it is appropriate that I should make the passing of Gareth Evans, who was the first crown court reporter at Mold Crown Court.
“His contribution to the administration of justice and the public’s perception of justice deserves to be marked.”
Gareth had returned to North Wales following a career with the then Wrexham Leader, the Western Mail in Cardiff and Reuters in London.
He also served on Mold Town Council and was Mayor of Mold on three occasions.
Long time colleague and former editor of the Evening Leader Reg Herbert joined the tributes saying: “Gareth had a tremendous sense of humour and was a very likable man.
“Gareth was an excellent journalist and particularly good at court reporting. It is sad news to hear of his death, he will be greatly missed.”
Current editor of the Leader Barrie Jones said: “Gareth was an excellent journalist of the old school who worked for The Leader for many years.
“He knew just what would interest our readers and there was no one better at developing a great story even when information was hard to come by using his huge range of contacts and extensive local knowledge.”