A COUNCIL chief has died at the age of 45 after battling cancer for a year.
Jonathan Drake was Kirklees Council's head of cultural services for six years.
He was shortly due to take up a new role as head of the recently combined leisure and cultural services.
One of his jobs would have been to help sort the future of Huddersfield's decaying library and art gallery.
Mr Drake would have played a major role in consultation on the building's future.
Colleagues paid tribute to Mr Drake today.
Rob Vincent, Kirklees Council's deputy chief executive, said: "Jonathan made a major difference to the development of cultural services for the people of Kirklees and he had been very much looking forward to the challenges of his new role despite his illness over recent months.
"He was held in very high regard by all who worked with him in the council, the Kirklees community and in wider cultural networks."
A private funeral is due to be held next Tuesday.
Mr Drake came to Huddersfield in 1997 having previously worked for Southampton City Council for 14 years.
He leaves a wife, Lynne.