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Hyperlocal journalist, 36, dies hours after last story published

steph-clarkeA journalist and photographer who founded a hyperlocal website has died aged 36 just hours after publishing her last story.

Tributes have been paid to Stephanie Clarke, who ran, a website focused on Wednesfield, near Wolverhampton, with her husband James.

Stephanie died at 6.50am last Friday after suffering a brain haemorrhage the previous day – the day her last article was published on the WV11 site.

In it, she thanked community groups and businesses for pledging funds to improve the Christmas lights on Wednesfield High Street, the switching on of which she had been due to attend with her family that night.

Councillor Phil Bateman, who represents Wednesfield North on City of Wolverhampton Council, said: “As Wednesfield basked in the glory of the Christmas lights switch-on, Steph and James were missing.

“They are amongst the core community activists that had done all the hard work through the volunteer group ‘Hands on Wednesfield’ to organise and fund the Wednesfield Christmas lights.

“We didn’t know then that while the lights were being switched on, Steph was fighting for her life.”

Away from WV11, Stephanie was involved in a number of community groups in Wednesfield and had lived in the town for most of her life.

She is survived by James and her son Jordan.

James posted on Facebook: “Words cannot explain how devastated and lost we are without her, as we know many of you will be.”