The former Conservative MP and arch Eurosceptic Sir Teddy Taylor has died, his family said. He was 80.

Sir Teddy, who had been ill for some months, died in Southend Hospital late on Wednesday, his wife, Sheila Taylor said.

First entering Parliament as MP for Glasgow Cathcart in 1964, his political career was marked by a fierce loathing of the European Union.

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He quit as a Scottish Office minister in 1971 over Edward Heath's decision to join what was then the Common Market.

Two decades later he was among a band of diehard Tory rebels - the so-called "whipless wonders"- who had the whip withdrawn and were kicked out of the party by John Major over their opposition to the Maastricht Treaty.

In 1979 he was elected MP for Southend East in a by-election, having finally lost marginal Glasgow Cathcart, and held the seat until he retired from Parliament in 2005.

His wife said that while he never changed his views on Europe, he had remained devoted to his constituency and its people.

"He loved being an MP here. The great love of his life was helping his constituents. He really cared about Southend and was very well-liked by everybody here," she said.