A former Gazette photographer who ran a popular family studio in Poulton has died aged 61.
Chris Astbury joined The Gazette’s Victoria Street offices in 1970 as a 19-year-old and worked for the newspaper until 1975 before leaving journalism to work for his father.
The pair ran Cameragraphic – later known as The Studio of Peter Astbury – until 1983 when his father died, leaving Mr Astbury to take full control of the business.
The award winning photographer stayed in the industry his whole life and set up his own studio inside his home on Breck Road, Poulton.
Kate Astbury, one of Mr Astbury’s five children, followed her father into photography by setting up her own business in Manchester.
The 31-year-old said: “He was kind, generous, thoughtful and always had really good advice.
“He was really well-known around Poulton and we’ve had so many flowers and cards sent to us. His job meant he was good with people and able to build a rapport with them as soon as he met them.
“He has some really close friends who he met throughout his life and he kept in touch with them after they moved away.”
Mr Astbury was born in Cumbria and moved to Poulton aged five.
He attended Carr Head Primary School, Hodgson High School and later Blackpool Technical College where he studied photography.
In his spare time he was an outdoor pursuits enthusiast who loved sports, especially cycling.
Five years ago he developed rheumatoid arthritis and pulmonary fibrosis, however, the severity of the second condition went un-recognised until he became progressively worse this year.
He died in Blackpool Victoria Hospital’s intensive care unit last Tuesday morning.
An informal service will be held at Singleton Lodge, Lodge Lane, Singleton, at 4pm today, and the family has requested people do not wear suits for the occasion.
Please feel free to leave your tributes to Chris below.