Tributes have poured in for a beloved drag queen and “unsung hero” of the LGBTQ+ community.

Organisations, charities, fellow drag queens and the Brighton and Hove community have spoken of their shock and heartbreak at the death of Miss Jason, whose real name was Jason Sutton.

Jason entertained audiences for more than three decades and appeared on TV shows including BBC One’s The Weakest Link (Drag Queen Special), Channel 4’s Come Dine With Me, BBC One’s Put Your Money Where Your Mouth Is and BBC One’s Blankety Blank.

The comedy drag star and pantomime dame performed as one of the wicked stepsisters in Cinderella at the Metropole hotel in Brighton last December.

During his career he performed alongside well-known names including Jo Brand and Strictly's Brendan Cole.

He was also due to perform as Nurse Nellie in Sleeping Beauty this Christmas.

The Argus: Jason Sutton with Brendan Cole in Snow White 2018Jason Sutton with Brendan Cole in Snow White 2018 (Image: The Argus)

Jason’s management Smash Talent said the beloved performer will “never be forgotten”.

 “We are very saddened to hear that Jason has passed away,” they said.

“Jason was an incredible light in our community with 32 years of entertaining us all and it won’t be the same without them. He was known for being a phenomenal pantomime dame, drag queen and comedian.

“We love you and will miss you immensely. Our thoughts are with Terry Ward [his partner], his family and his friends at this time.”

Brighton and Hove Pride joined tributes describing Jason as an "unsung hero of the community".

The Argus: Jason Sutton with his dog ChesterJason Sutton with his dog Chester (Image: Chris Jepson)

Jason performed at Brighton and Hove Pride every year and hosted the event's dog show.

"Jason was a well-respected and much-loved member of the LGBTQ+ community both here in Brighton, across the UK and beyond," a spokesman said.

"As well as performing at Brighton Pride every year, he was also our go-to host for the annual Pride Dog Show and as Miss Jason held many one-woman shows at Ironworks Studios, our year-round LGBTQ+ venue.

"Jason was always first in line for community projects and fundraisers and did much behind the scenes to support local charities and community projects.

"He was a kind and generous man and will be very much missed."

The Argus: Miss Jason performing in BrightonMiss Jason performing in Brighton (Image: Hannah Brackenbury / The Argus)

Jason was appointed a patron of The Sussex Beacon, a charity supporting people living with HIV in the county, in November.

The charity said: “We are enormously saddened and shocked by the news that the wonderful Jason Sutton has passed away.

“Not only a beloved patron, but also a very dear friend, as recently as last week Jason visited the Beacon and expressed his excitement over a number of upcoming projects.

“It is rare someone can have such a profound impact on so many people’s lives. He brought joy, love, kindness and hope to so many.

“Our love and thoughts go to Jason’s partner Terry, family and his many friends.

“Jason, as you would say, 'go well dear'. You were one of a kind.”

Paul Hilly, chairman of trustees at the charity, said Jason's long support of the Beacon has been "enormously appreciated".

"On becoming a patron, Jason instantly began to work hard to help us engage even more closely with the very community that we are here to serve," he said.

"He believed passionately in our work, often talking about The Sussex Beacon during his shows and at events.

"We will always remember Jason as a kind, caring and proud man. He will be greatly missed by The Sussex Beacon family."

The Argus: Jason Sutton in Privates on ParadeJason Sutton in Privates on Parade (Image: The Argus)

Fans rallied round the artist in 2020 to raise money for him after a tumour left him with tinnitus and balance problems.

LGBTQ venue Legends Brighton described Jason as an “exceptional individual”.

“We are broken,” a statement read. “Our darling Jason - an exceptional individual with such a talent to make us all happy.  Rightly everyone who knew him is devastated. 

“He was the very best of friends, with the kindest heart, charismatic, genuine, an icon of our community and an absolute joy both on and off stage - our home is empty.

“Will miss you for ever.”

BBC Radio Sussex presenter Allison Ferns, who starred in Cinderella alongside Jason, wrote: “Such sad news and such a shock. I will always be so grateful I got the chance to do panto with you and I learnt so much from watching you. Such a wonderful, generous performer and so bloody funny off stage and on. A truly lovely, kind soul who will be much missed. Love you dear.”