A TALENTED musician and cherished family man has died.

Colin Tolson, aged 89, died peacefully of natural causes at his home in Windermere.

Mr Tolson was an organist for more than 60 years and was highly regarded as an accompanist of K Shoe Male Voice Choir - which he was part of for more than three decades.

Aside from this role with the Kendal choir group, he also accompanied a number of different soloists and ensembles at various concert performances throughout the county.

Competitions with the K Shoe group occasionally took Mr Tolson further afield, including as far as Germany.

At a 2004 spring concert in Ambleside, a review in The Westmorland Gazette praised his accompaniment, noting his skilful handling of ‘Handel’s Sonata in G Minor with its demanding variations in the movements calling for crisp fingering and contemplative playing’.

One reviewer described Mr Tolson as having ‘fingers of fire’ after a particularly spirited performance.

Mr Tolson worked for the insurance provider Pearl Assurance until he retired at 55.

In his later years, he became a volunteer for CancerCare as well as a driver for the Westmorland General Hospital car service.

Mr Tolson was happily married to his wife, Jean, for nearly 68 years.

He was the proud father of two sons, Jonathan and Michael, and two daughters - Kathryn and Julie.

He was also a loving grandfather to five grandchildren: Leanne, Christina, Carla, Meagan and Sam.

His daughter Julie described Mr Tolson as a ‘family man’ and ‘never happier than with a house full of family.’

She said her father died peacefully listening to recordings of music the two had played together.

Mr Tolson’s other interests, besides music, included fell-walking, badminton and astronomy - all of which he was able to enjoy during the 60 years he spent working and living in the South Lakes.

Owing to the disruption and uncertainty brought on by the current Coronavirus situation, Mr Tolson’s family said a service of thanksgiving will take place at a future date.

Details of the ceremony will be forthcoming in due course.

They hope his many friends and wider family will be able to meet to celebrate the life of a popular, kind ‘true gentleman’.