“MACHYNLLETH WILL never be the same.”

Heartfelt words from devastated friends and colleagues as they described the death of former mayor and current deputy mayor of the town, Sylvia Rowlands.

The current deputy mayor, Sylvia had recently stepped in to the breach and temporarily taken over the role again as current mayor, Cllr Tony Jones, recovers from a hip operation.

Machynlleth County Councillor Michael Williams led the tributes to Cllr Rowlands: “The whole town and area is stunned by the news.

“She was a hugely committed lady to her community and family.

“She was always prepared to help and volunteer whatever the circumstances.

“Everybody here is shocked that we have lost her in this tragic way.

“Machynlleth will never be the same place without her.”

Machynlleth Mayor, Cllr Tony Jones, said: “I was devastated to hear of her passing when I received a call on Sunday morning.

“She’s been my deputy mayor for the past two years and we’ve worked very closely.

“If I needed any help or advice, she was just on the end of the phone and she helped me out on several occasions.

“Since I had my hip operation four weeks ago she’s been in charge and had taken over mayoral duties.

“She will be greatly missed, she did so many things for Machynlleth and for the people.”

Cllr Jones added that she was a committed member of the British Legion Branch in the town and was always heavily involved with the annual poppy appeal.

Marilyn Shields, Dyfi Valley Health practice manager, said: “Sylvia joined the Machynlleth Medical Practice over 40 years ago.

“She was a unique member of the team – a dedicated, compassionate and sympathetic person who was considerate and entertaining to work with.

“She added a personal touch to her work in the surgery and was renowned for her genuine and heartfelt acts of kindness. Sylvia will be deeply missed both by colleagues and patients.”

Monday night’s Machynlleth Town Council meeting was cancelled as a mark of respect.

A spokeswoman for Machynlleth Town Council said: “Cllr Sylvia Rowlands was a dedicated councillor who had served on the town council for over 40 years.

“She was following in the footsteps of her father John David Holt who had served on the Urban District Council prior to the town council being formed.

“During her time in office she had been the mayor in 1998/99, 2004/05 and again 2009/00 and had currently been the deputy mayor for the past two years.

“She was a well known and popular councillor who always put the interests of the town and its townsfolk first and was always vocal and passionate about maintaining the services for the town.

“Her selfless acts of kindness were known only to those she had touched. She will be sorely missed by all those who had had the pleasure to serve or work with her.”