TRIBUTES have been paid to a well-known and "wonderful" barrister who died recently after long illness.

The funeral of Sukhbir Singh Bassra, who died recently aged 62, was taking place today at the Guru Gobind Singh Gurdwara in Leeds Road.

Mr Bassra was a well known and well respected lawyer in Bradford where he worked for more than 35 years.

He qualified as a solicitor in 1982 before founding S Bassra & Co solicitors, which is now Petherbridge Bassra, in 1985.

He was being called to the Bar in 1993, and last worked at Park Square Barristers in Leeds.

Mr Bassra died after a long battle with renal failure and also suffered from heart failure, and is survived by his wife Deshoo, sister Surinder Kaur Dhesi, children Sharen and Amarveer, and grandchildren Ajay Jaiya, Akaal and Aryan.

He qualified as a solicitor in 1982, forming S Bassra & Co. in 1985, and

Amanpreet Bassra, Mr Bassra's daughter-in-law, said her father-in-law was "courageous" and a "great influence".

She said: "He was married for 39 years to Deshoo.

"He was a brilliant son to his parents who lived with him until their passing and brother to his very dear sister Surinder.

"His biggest achievement would be his grandchildren who he loved dearly.

"He was a lifelong Leeds United supporter but as the senior partner of the firm he had close connections to Bradford City.

"He faced his illness with courage and he did not let it become an obstacle in his life.

"He enjoyed life and was loved by many. He was a great influence to everyone who came to know him."

Richard Wright QC, head of chambers at Park Square Barristers, said: “It is with great sadness that we learned today of the passing of one of our very best, Sukhbir Singh Bassra, or as he was known to us all Baz.

"His professional achievements were many as Baz was the founding father of Bassra solicitors – now Petherbridge Bassra before he came to the Bar and forged a busy criminal practice.

"But his greatest pride and love was not for the job but for his family and his friends.

"He was, quite simply, a wonderful man. His warmth, kindness and generosity of spirit were unparalleled.

"For many years he struggled with ill health that would have caused most of us to give up long ago, but Baz carried on, fighting to the end such was his love of life, and those in his life.

"Our thoughts are now with Deshoo, Amarveer, Sharen, their families and all those who mourn the passing of this giant.”