UK – John Shuttleworth, a trenchant commentator on the pensions scene in the UK for PricewaterhouseCoopers, has died suddenly aged 47.

“It is with great sadness that I have to let you know that John Shuttleworth died suddenly and without warning on Sunday April 3 at the age of 47,” said PWC chief pensions actuary Trevor Llanwarne.

“His death is a great loss to family, friends and colleagues and he will be sorely missed.”

Shuttleworth joined Coopers and Lybrand in 1983 and became a partner in 1989. Before that he was at Unilever, where he was part of the team responsible for actuarial variations and financial reporting of their pensions schemes worldwide.

PWC said Shuttleworth was one of the “great leaders of the pensions debate in this country over the last fifteen years”. He had argued that actuarial valuations for pension schemes should be on a market value basis.

“John's reputation as an independent thinker saw him as an almost lone voice in the mid to late 1990s when he argued that pension schemes should be invested in bonds not equities, despite the roaring bull markets that were then in full train,” the consulting firm added.

In a memorable article in the Financial Times in 2003, Shuttleworth launched a scathing attack on everyone involved in the UK pensions industry – with nobody escaping the blame for its problems.

“Everybody is partly to blame – although nobody is honest enough to raise their hand,” he wrote. “The roll-call of indictments is a long one.”