The family of a Redbourn cyclist, who died in a crash in St Albans on Thursday, has paid tribute to an "extraordinary and beautiful man".

Mark Greenwood, 57, was killed after the bicycle he was riding, was involved in a crash with a silver VW Golf in Redbourn Road at around 6.25pm on Thursday, January 9.

Redbourn resident Mr Greenwood leaves behind life partner Susie Ullman and her son Jamie, 17, his brother John and his wife Helen and nephews George, 13 and Alfred ,11, as well as his parents, John and Jean.

He was also a godfather to three children.

Mr Greenwood was born in Leeds and grew up in the Channel Islands. He lived in Redbourn for the past 10 years, near St Mary’s Church.

Speaking on behalf of the family, Ms Ullman said: "Mark was my life partner and heart friend. We’d known each other for 38 years and he was like a father to Jamie.

"Mark loved Redbourn. He’d walk daily through the church yard across the common to see the bluebell wood and would go to the Co-op to buy his morning croissant.

"He liked stillness and silence, and showed us the beauty in the small things of life. He was a gentle, good soul. His favourite poem began ‘I’ll be your mirror’ and that’s what he was to people. He only wanted to show you the good things about yourself.

"He was my guardian angel and I don’t know how I will live without him."

Mr Greenwood had a passion for reading, as well as a love for graphics books, superheroes, Tolkien and CS Lewis.

He had recently been to the cinema to see the Hobbit and enjoyed watching Sherlock Holmes. A practising Christian, Mr Greenwood also enjoyed walking and seeking places of beauty.

Mr Greenwood worked for Abbeyfield Society, a charity dedicated to providing housing, support and care for people at different stages of later life. He worked on creating standards of care for the elderly and his work enhanced the lives of people across the country.

He had recently been awarded the Abbeyfield Society’s National Chief Executive Award for the employee who made the most significant contribution to the society.

Ms Ullman added: "The award was the first of its kind and Mark was personally selected by the chief executive to receive it. He was given an ovation when he received it. He wanted to make things better for people and that’s what he did. He was a man of beauty and only thought the best in people.

"He was polite and respectful to people, no matter who they were. It was the person’s soul that he cared about. He was extraordinary.

"Mark was a wonderful role model to my son. He was there for him. They talked about life, football, anything and everything, and they would text and phone each other often.

"We’re left with the memory of him. He’s left behind something that no-one else will fill. He looked after me. There’s no one bad memory of this beautiful man. He’s irreplaceable."

Mr Greenwood’s funeral will take place in St Mary’s Church in Redbourn at 2pm on January 21 and anyone who knew him is invited.

Ms Ullman added: "We would love for people to come to the funeral, but if they can’t make it, please think of him during this time."