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Photographer and ‘huge asset’ leaves weeklies after 35 years

Mark AthertonA photographer described as a “huge asset” is leaving two sister weeklies after 35 years of service.

Mark Atherton has announced his departure from the Weston Mercury and North Somerset Times.

During three-and-a-half decades with the Archant titles, Mark has covered royal and celebrity visits, as well as fires and riots.

Looking back on his career, he told the Times he had “enjoyed it all”.

Mark, pictured, said: “What’s really been a joy is going into flower shows and country fairs across Weston and North Somerset and just being able to walk in and start telling people where to stand, it’s a privilege and great fun.

“It’s great to meet people and hear their stories and work out ways of telling their stories in pictures and it’s just a privilege to be in among the hustle and bustle of clubs and societies doing their things for Weston and North Somerset and I’ve got so many friends I’ve met through that.”

He added: “I just want to say a huge thank you to all the people I’ve met and worked with across North Somerset.

“It’s been such a privilege to be invited to share people’s stories and attend so many events.

“I really want to get across how grateful I am to have worked at the Mercury. I’ve just had a ball.”

Vicky Angear, who edits the titles has paid tribute to Mark.

She said: “Mark is an exceptional photographer and has been a huge asset to the Mercury and Times.

“He is known by so many people in the community for his kindness and professionalism and has the ability to set people at ease so he can snap the best photos.

“He has dedicated more than three decades to the Mercury and Times and will be sorely missed by all his friends, colleagues and members of the community.

“We wish him all the best for the future.”