Lee Flaws: half century of photos in mid-Devon

Photographer Lee Flaws, whose camera recorded life in the West Country, especially mid-Devon, over the last 50 years, has died aged 71.

For many years, Flaws worked for the Mid Devon Gazette series as a staffer and freelance, and made his home near the Gazette base in Tiverton.

His work appeared in many newspapers and publications throughout the South-West, but it was in mid-Devon that he was best known.

Until very recently, Flaws was still contributing to the Gazette and was always a welcome visitor to events he covered.

The series has also regularly featured his archive pictures – many processed from glass negatives – in The Flaws Files.

Long-term colleague, sports editor Peter Slater, said: “Lee was such a larger-than-life character. He always had something to smile about, and everybody in Tiverton knew him. He was a great friend to so many, and a wonderful ambassador for the paper, too. He will be missed enormously.”

Born Leitram Gregory Flaws in Nantwich, Cheshire, he worked for the Gazette for nearly 50 years, either full-time or as a freelance. He also worked for the Exeter Express and Echo and Devon News Agency, as well as setting up his own business.

He was a favourite of many organisations and became a regular visitor to their annual functions.

Gazette deputy editor Mary-Ann Bloomfield said: “We feel we have lost a member of the Gazette family. He was a true professional and a wonderful friend to so many people.”

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