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Lewes Bonfire stalwart Keith Austin dies
Tributes have been paid to the stalwart of the Lewes Bonfire celebrations.
Keith Austin was renowned for his long involvement and passionate support of Lewes Bonfire.
The 75-year-old passed away at his home in Priory Street, Lewes, last month. Those who knew Mr Austin said he would be remembered with fondness and respect and as someone who had influenced the life of the town.
Mr Austin worked with the Lewes Bonfire Council and Southover Bonfire Society and had numerous dealings with local and national authorities over the years.
He also took part in the Radio 4 Today programme to talk about the Lewes Bonfire and why it was important to the town.
Mr Austin was closely involved with the Lewes Operatic Society and Lewes Lions Club and served as a town councillor.
Lewes MP Norman Baker was among those paying tribute to Mr Austin. He said: “I was in contact with Keith over many years about Bonfire matters.
“I admired his straight-talking, his determination and his integrity, and generally had a lot of time for him.
“He is a loss to the town and to Bonfire in particular.”
A spokesman for Lewes Lions said: “Keith joined the Lewes Lions in 1974. He was a very committed Lion and was active in all our fundraising efforts.
“He was president in 1979-80 and 2005-06 and was also secretary of the Lions for a number of years.
“Recently he took on the role of PR and he was the organiser of our street collections.
“He was known for his dry humour and will be sadly missed by the Lewes Lions and the community of Lewes.”
Details of Mr Austin’s funeral will be revealed later this week and a large turnout is expected.
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