The Highland Council has paid tribute to former Highland Councillor Roddy Balfour who sadly passed on 11 January 2024.
Highland Council, Convener Bill Lobban said:
“Roddy left the Council at the last election after many years of stalwart service.
“He had one of the brightest minds of anyone I had the pleasure to meet and was a fierce and determined debater.
“He was also one of the nicest and most genuine people you could ever have met.
“The world is a much poorer place with his passing.”
Provost of Inverness and Area, Glynis Campbell Sinclair said:
“Roddy Balfour was one of a kind.
“After 23 years of service to Highland Council and his communities he finally decided not to stand in the 2022 election.
“Born in Tasmania, Australia, Roddy returned to his mother’s birthplace, and made the Highlands of Scotland his home.
“He was passionate about the Gaelic language and was a very accomplished Bagpiper.
“He had a quick wit, and a wicked sense of humour – he really did love to laugh.
“He will be sorely missed by his family and friends, Highland council staff and councillors and of course, the communities of Culloden and Ardersier.”
“At the City of Inverness Area Committee, he regularly demonstrated a wealth of knowledge on the Inverness Common Good Fund and his counsel is sorely missed on this and many other matters.”
Councillor Alasdair Christie also paid tribute, he said:
“Roddy was a Highland gentleman.
“With his razor sharp mind, he could argue the case either way for anything with logic and always with compassion and dignity.
“The work he did for Highland Council on Armed Forces and Armed Services was exceptional and it was down to him that we got as far as we did with the Armed Forces Covenant.
“He had a very successful legal career and I saw some of that separately in my role as Chief Executive of Citizens Advice.
“Roddy was on the Citizens Advice Board for 14 years and became a director in his own right.
“He took a keen interest in welfare rights, consumer issues and legal issues and added value to the charity immensely throughout that period.
“Roddy was one of those people that was a pleasure to meet in your life and you don’t meet too many people like Roddy Balfour in life and I think that we will all miss him deeply and our condolences to all his friends and family.
Roddy was elected to serve on The Highland Council for 5 consecutive terms from the 1999 to 2017 elections (serving until 2022) as an Independent Councillor.
He served the Ardersier, Croy and Petty Ward during the 1999 and 2003 election terms and was elected in 2007, 2012 and 2017 to the Ward of Culloden and Ardersier.
Throughout his service he was a Member of many Council committees and boards including the Fire Board and was Vice Chairman of Education in 2001 and 2002 and Chairman of Education, Culture and Sport in 2003. He also served as the Council’s Armed Forces and Veterans’ Champion.
During his last term of service, he was a member of the Places Committee, Audit and Scrutiny Committee, South Planning Applications Committee, the Planning Review Body and the City of Inverness Area Committee.