Obituary: Louis Isbrand, former council worker, 60

Louis Isbrand
Louis Isbrand
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A former East Lothian Council worker said to possess a rare gift for supporting young people has died just a month after retiring.

Louis Isbrand was just 60 when he died from a sudden heart attack on September 24.

His death came only weeks after the support worker began a new chapter in his life after more than 36 years of service at Lothian Regional Council and East Lothian Council.

Louis’ professional passion lay in youth and community projects.

The father-of-one was best known for his contributions to the Red School Youth Centre in Prestonpans, where he worked for the final 28 years of his career.

He was originally from Fraserburgh but settled in Edinburgh after becoming a graduate of the Capital’s Moray House College of Education.

Louis worked to provide life-changing opportunities for children and young people by giving them access to outdoor learning and international youth exchanges.

In 1992, he started the Red School Music Project, an initiative that used instrumental tuition, music composition and live performance to provide opportunities for the centre’s young members.

Hundreds of participants have benefited from the project.

Louis also worked in partnership with primary and secondary school colleagues to organise activities for children and young people in Prestonpans such as an annual school camp.

East Lothian Council leader Willie Innes said Louis’ role as a member of the community learning and development services team had been pivotal.

“Louis was a well known and much respected individual in Prestonpans who encouraged and inspired many young people in the town for nearly 30 years,” he said.

“He only retired a month ago and his death has shocked many in the local community.

“Louis dedicated his life to supporting and providing opportunities for children and young people in the Prestonpans community and his work will provide a lasting legacy.”

Red School Youth Centre staff said they had overwhelmed by the number of people who had been in touch to offer their condolences.

The centre’s Facebook page has been flooded with more than 70 tributes to a man described by those posting as “genuine” and “down to earth”.

Louis had been in the process of organising a charity event at the Royal Musselburgh Golf Club for later this month when he passed away. The concert on October 28, starting from 2pm, will now be used to celebrate Louis’ life and work.

Proceeds from the event will go towards activities run by the Red School Youth Centre.