Tributes paid to Orthodox councillor Brian Gordon

Elected in March as Barnet mayor, he died today aged 64


Tributes have been paid to strictly Orthodox councillor Brian Gordon, who died today aged 64 after an illness.

Today would have been Mr Gordon’s second day as Barnet mayor after decades of public service. The long-serving Conservative from Edgware had been set to take on the ceremonial role this week but the local authority’s annual meeting was postponed due to his health.

Mr Gordon, who was first elected to the council in 1998, was also an executive member of the Union of Orthodox Hebrew Congregations and a solicitor. 

He will be remembered as a “fine man” and a “pillar of the Jewish community” as well as “a first rate” member of Barnet Council, tweeted former Tory councillor Brian Coleman. 

He was “a valued Councillor and respected member of the Conservative Group, who passionately represented Edgware ward for over two decades,” said Barnet council leader Dan Thomas, who added, “the whole community will be reeling from this sad news.”

“As well as being a committed Councillor, Brian was a keen journalist and legal counsellor, always keen to vocally support the causes close to his heart. He was also a well-known and respected member of his community at Machazikei Haddass in Edgware,” Mr Thomas said.

Barnet Mayor Cllr Caroline Stock said Mr Gordon had been looking forward to taking on the role. “I send the whole family my sincerest thoughts and heartfelt sympathy and wish them all the strength to get through this difficult time,” she added.

 TV writer and comedian Lee Kern was also among those to pay tribute to him. “He taught me my barmitzvah and was always happy to help my family and was very, very accepting of us not being frum. I really, really liked him,” Mr Kern tweeted on Thursday.

Barnet’s Labour branch expressed its “sincere condolences” and said its thoughts were with Mr Gordon’s family and friends. 

He was known to have made controversial statements on the role of women in Judaism and the teaching of same-sex relationships in schools, which at times divided the community. 

Mr Gordon was forced to apologise in 2007 after Purim photos emerged of him in blackface, impersonating anti-apartheid icon Nelson Mandela.

His is survived by his wife Julie and their children.


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