Derek previously revealed he had a ghostly guide named Sam, who helped him through his life decisions.
He told the Nottingham Post: “I first met my spirit guide, Sam, in a previous lifetime when I was an Ethiopian boy and Sam was a friend of the family. This is about 2,038 years ago.
“When my village was attacked by some marauding invaders, I heard the screaming and I scampered away.”
Twitter has been inundated with tributes to him, with one post reading: “Heaven gained an angel. A true gentleman and one of my husband’s dearest friends.
“My heart goes out to his wonderful wife Gwen and their family. We will love and miss you forever. Shine bright Derek and sleep tight xxx.”