A FORMER district councillor and active member of life in South Lakeland has died aged 86.

Frank Hodson, who represented the Burneside Ward at South Lakeland District Council (SLDC) between 2003 and 2011, wrote a detailed obituary of his life prior to his death from natural causes.

Mr Hodson was born in March 1933 at Park Hospital (now Trafford General), Greater Manchester.

In 1954 he was called up for national service and served two years in the Corps of Royal Electrical and Mechanical Engineers (REME). It was during this period of his life that he met future wife Pat, who was an occupational therapy student in Liverpool.

After qualifying in 1956, Pat moved to Northern Ireland for work. The couple got engaged before she left, later getting married at St Martin’s Church, Bowness-on-Windermere.

Mr Hodson eventually began work as a training officer at engineering firm Flexibox in Ballymena, and travelled 50 miles by motorcycle to see his wife in Omagh at weekends.

In 1959 the couple moved to Kendal, where Mr Hodson began working at another engineering firm, Gilbert Gilkes & Gordon Ltd. After buying their first car - a Reliant Robin - the pair trundled about all over the country. Along with their three children, they enjoyed camping and caravanning, and also owned a canal boat for a time.

In 1963, Mr Hodson joined the Lakeland Regional Group of the Youth Hostel Association, serving until 1985.

During his time in South Lakeland, he helped form the Lakeland branch of the Long Distance Walkers Association, which he chaired. In this role he helped to plan many events, including numerous canal walks and the Arnside Marathon.

In 2003, Mr Hodson was asked by the Liberal Democrats to stand as a candidate for the Burneside Ward in the SLDC council elections. He was ‘amazed’ to be elected and served until 2011, when he retired.

Elsewhere, he was on the committee which helped to ‘twin’ Kendal with Rinteln in Germany, a town which he visited many times. He also spent time as chair of the former Kendal Tourist and Publicity Association.