English singer Peter Skellern, who was best known for his quirky and bittersweet meditations on love and romance, has died aged 69 just months after he was ordained as a priest by the Archbishop of Canterbury.

Born in Bury, Lancashire, before moving to Cornwall, Skellern began his musical career at his local church and studied at Guildhall School of Music and Drama in England.

He began recording in the 1970s and released 14 albums and collaborated with fellow musician, Richard Stilgoe. Skellern's best known songs include You're a Lady, Softly Whispering I Love You and his version of Love is The Sweetest Thing, a song first made popular by Al Bowlly in 1932.

He also wrote the lyrics for the song One More Kiss, Dear from the landmark 1982 sci-fi film Blade Runner. In 1984, he formed a group called Oasis with cellist Julian Lloyd Webber and folk singer Mary Hopkin. 

In his later years, Skellern has been writing choral music including Six Simple Carols and The Nativity Cantata.

Skellern began training to be a priest - a dream since he was nine years old - three years ago.

He was then diagnosed with an inoperable brain tumour, but was encouraged to continue with his work.

Following his official ordination in October, he said: "For about a week I hung in this abyss and I just grabbed God.

"It was like that for about a week and then God closed the ground beneath me and I became resigned and happy and I have been like that ever since."

He is survived by his wife Diana and his two children.