Tributes have been paid to a much-loved country music DJ from Sidcup who has passed away.

Bob Powel, 71, was a major figure on the British country music scene during the 1970's and 80's when he presented a radio show called London Country on BBC radio from 1971 to 1988.

The music lover was born in Bickley and moved to Canada when he was three with his family.

They ended up back in Kent by the time Mr Powel was 12 living in Sevenoaks.

Tom Baker, 63, of Appledore Crescent, Sidcup, who was a fan of Mr Powel and ended up becoming friends with him after meeting on an internet forum, has paid tribute to his "special" friend.

He said: "I used to listen to Bob when he was air and I was a fan.

"I was a pop music fan. In the sixties country music was a bit naff but by the seventies I started to like it and began listening to Bob's show.

"Bob had a warm style but I didn't think of him again until 2000 when I started to think music didn't sound as good as it used to.

"I just started to wonder what had happened to him and there was a forum I found on the internet which he was on and he said he lived in Sidcup.

"We swapped contact details and I started going round to see him once a week for the last four years.

"It was a very special friendship, he was a very genuine man."

Mr Powel, of Amberley Court, and also ran a country music record shop in Grovelands Road, St Paul's Cray from 1984 for some years, but it eventually closed because of declining sales.

Mr Baker added: "I began writing a book on him because after his career on the radio ended it was hard for him.

"I wanted to get people interested in him again.

"When I first met him I was pretty star stuck "I could not believe that I was going to meet him, but he had no pretensions."

Bexley Police have confirmed that Mr Powel died in non suspicious circumstances on May 8.