A “passionate” north-east councillor is to step down from his role in the new year due to ill health.
Tom Malone has represented the Peterhead south and Cruden constituency since his election in 2012.
However he has now announced he will give up his position at Aberdeenshire Council in 2017 because of illness.
Colleagues last night rallied to pay tribute to the work he has carried out in his constituency.
Aberdeenshire Council chief executive Jim Savege said the authority had accepted Mr Malone’s resignation.
“We respect councillor Malone’s wish to step down, and thank him for his service to Aberdeenshire,” he said.
Richard Thomson, council co-leader, added: “Councillor Malone has worked hard to support his constituents in Peterhead and has a prominent role in the local community, both through his work as a councillor and his involvement in his church.
“He has played an active role on the housing and social work committee, where his background as a social worker gave him a useful insight into this area of work.
“All Tom’s colleagues will be saddened to hear of his ill health and we wish him the very best in the future.”
Fellow co-leader Alison Evison, who was elected at the same time as Mr Malone, said he was a “valued colleague”.
She added: “We are all sad to hear of Tom’s ill health which he has been struggling with for some time.”
And Peterhead councillor Stuart Pratt, chairman of the Buchan area committee, of which Mr Malone is a member, said: “He has a prominent role in the community and we will miss him at area committee.
“We understand that this must have been a difficult decision for him and wish him good health in the future.”
Mr Malone, who launched the Blue Stone Music project – a £60,000 award for youth investment in the community – will step down at the end of January 2017.
A vacancy will remain in the Peterhead south and Cruden constituency until the local government elections in May.
The P&J was unable to contact Mr Malone for comment last night.