The landlord of a Suffolk pub has described the heartbreak of his staff at the death of a harbour master, who was thought to be the UK's oldest in the role.

George Collins died on Boxing Day aged 93, having served as harbour master at Ramsholt for more than 40 years.

Max Durrant, publican at the Ramsholt Arms, said Mr Collins was pleased when he took over the running of the pub 11 years ago and they 'got on really well'.

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"He was a big fan of me taking on the pub because the pub had not achieved its potential for some time and I just came in and gave it a lick of paint and a good chef and good food," Mr Durrant said.

He described Mr Collins, who has a twin brother Billy, as the 'Grandfather of Ramsholt' who was very 'knowledgeable and a decent man'.

Mr Durrant added such was the harbour master's experience that he could predict the weather days in advance and would always be right.

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East Anglian Daily Times: Max Durrant, landlord of the Ramsholt Arms, said staff were heartbroken by the death of George CollinsMax Durrant, landlord of the Ramsholt Arms, said staff were heartbroken by the death of George Collins (Image: Charlotte Bond)He said he would visit the pub every Friday lunchtime for his customary plate of fish and chips, though he did not drink alcohol.

The location of Ramsholt on a peninsula meant the village was tucked away and had a 'Swallows and Amazons' feel, Mr Durrant added, referring to the 1930s novel about two groups of children who camped on an island in the Lake District.

"It is everyone's little secret, it is a very special place for so many people and George was integral to that special feeling. He was very famous," the landlord said.

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Such was Mr Collins' popularity that when a boat he used as an office was destroyed by fire in 2019, an appeal on the donations website JustGiving raised £5,000 for a new boat for him.

In June, he suffered a stroke, but was featured in the EADT in September when he returned to the water for a boat trip with his brother Billy after leaving Ipswich Hospital.

"Everyone is heartbroken by his death. All my staff and everyone who knew him because he was such a gentleman," Mr Durrant added.

READ MORE: Suffolk news