Sadness at death of cuts protester

Brian Gregory campaigned against austerity measures
Brian Gregory campaigned against austerity measures
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Tributes have been paid to an anti-austerity campaigner who has died at his Blackpool home.

Brian Gregory was a familiar sight most weekends in Blackpool town centre, manning a stall urging people to support calls for the government to rethink budget cuts.

He was a former secretary of the Blackpool, Fylde and Wyre Trade Union Council as well as a member of Blackpool Against the Cuts (BAC).

Mr Gregory, who was believed to have been in his early 60s, was found at his home in Marton on Monday.

Ken Cridland, chairman of BAC, said: “Brian organised the Blackpool Against Cuts stall in town and I spent a couple of hours on many Saturdays with him on the stall at the top of Victoria Street.

“There we were regularly visited by those suffering badly in Blackpool.

“Brian had a good supply of information leaflets on where to get help and advice on a range of issues, including unemployment problems, and where people could get a meal at the food banks around the town.”

Mr Cridland said Mr Gregory had himself experienced the hardship of being out of work. He added: “He never gave up fighting for what he believed was right, but he was made to suffer greatly in the last years of his life.

“The roll of the dice and its effects on his health meant he entered that downwards financial spiral that has become increasingly common
 in our austerity ridden society.

“Unable to get back into employment in his early sixties, he saw his phone line go, then his old car, while his house deteriorated around him.

“Last winter he could not afford to put the heating on until friends and 
family helped him out at Christmas.”