Tributes have been paid to a much loved shepherd who has died recently following a brain tumour.

John Little was born on December 21, 1965 and was one of four children to parents Raymond and Helen.

After growing up in the Greenhead and Gilsland area, John went on to become a shepherd on a range of local farms where he continued his love for the countryside and wildlife including birds.

Later he would continue to work further afield and eventually join the North Tyne Hunt where he would first meet his wife Lynn.

After moving to Redesmouth together in 1994, they would go on to marry the following year before another move three years later.

In 1998, they moved to Bowes Hill, Tarset where they would remain until he died.

The pair would also go on to have two children, a son and a daughter.

Leanne was born in September 1997, while her brother Daniel was born in May 2002.

Over the years, John would continue his shepherding work and also did a lot of sheep work too.

This included contract clipping as well as lambing and John was also a fine stone waller, with his brother Mark learning how to do it after being taught from his brother.

“He did a lot of farm contracting specialising in sheep work and he did a lot of shearing where he’d do a lot of clipping,” said his brother Mark.

“He was into his terriers and was a keen countryman.”

In 2006 however, John was diagnosed with a Oligodendroglioma tumour that would see him be forced to undergo several operations and treatments as he battled against it.

John died peacefully on February 20 at the age of 55.

In his memory, his brother Mark and niece Amy recently completed a walk along Hadrian’s Wall to help raise funds for The Brain Tumour Charity.

Totalling 26 miles, the pair set off at The Robin Hood pub before going on to finish the walk at The Twice Brewed Inn near Bardon Mill.

At time of writing, the pair have raised nearly £3,000 for the charity after completing the event on April 17.

“We had a lot of family support along the way - it was such a hot day which made it very hard,” said Amy.

“We can’t thank everyone enough for their donations and support.”

To find out more about the walking challenge and to donate, head to: