FORMER mayor of Sandown and active figure in the Sandown community, Norman Warner, has died aged 86, following a short battle with cancer.

Norman was born in Kensington in 1935, spending his childhood growing up in Twickenham with his parents and twin brother Ken.

He had a passion for art from an early age but was told by his mum that he needed to get a 'proper job' and so when he was offered a job from school with a firm of accountants in London, he started his working career.

He was called to do national service and spent three years at RAF Hendon.

After national service, Norman continued his career in accountancy and started auditing around the country.

One of his auditing trips took him to Cardiff, where he met Natalie at a dance.

They kept in contact, and Norman proposed, Natalie accepted, and they married in 1961, setting up a home in the Twickenham area.

Their daughter Helen was born in 1962, followed by their son Paul in 1966.

By the early 70s the area where they lived was getting busier, and Heathrow airport was expanding, so they looked to relocate further south.

The Isle of Wight became their chosen destination, and they moved to Shanklin in 1971.

Norman and his wife got involved with the Savoyards where his talents were harnessed in scenery painting.

Isle of Wight County Press: Norman Warner.Norman Warner.

A few years later, they moved to Arreton where they got involved in the village community mainly through St. George’s Church.

When the opportunity arose, the pair opened an art shop in Sandown called ‘Warner Arts’.

The shop featured many styles of Norman’s art, including his fine line drawings, miniature silhouette portraits, miniature acrylic paintings and larger works.

During this time, Norman built up his freelance accounting business and closed the art shop to concentrate on exhibitions and commissions and started an art class in Sandown.

Norman was soon actively involved in the Sandown community and became mayor in 1989.

He also became president of the Sandown Rotary in 1995 and was chairman of the Twinning Association, chair of Sandown Business Association, a governor for both Sandham Middle and Sandown CE Primary and vice president of the Carnival Association.

Norman leaves behind his wife Natalie, children Helen and Paul, daughter-in-law Karen and his grandchildren Rhiannon, Sam, Floraidh and Charlotte, plus Rosie the dog.

The funeral will take place on Tuesday at 10.30am at the Isle of Wight Crematorium.