Obituary: Tributes to artist Peter Brook, 81

TRIBUTES have been paid following the death of a leading Calderdale artist.

Peter Brook, 81, of Brighouse, died in his sleep at Calderdale Royal Hospital.

The work of the Pennine landscape painter is the subject of several books and he has exhibited across the globe.

His fans included actor James Mason, and 1960s pop star Tommy Steele.

Steven Lord, of Harrison Lord Gallery, Brighouse, which often exhibited Mr Brook's work, said the artist was "a real character" who would be very sadly missed.

"Every day he used to come into Brighouse and to the gallery to see what we were showing of his work and what we were selling.

"He wasn't concerned about the money, he wanted to know who was buying his work and that they were buying it because they liked it.

"He was able to see scenes no one else could until he painted them.

"He opened my eyes to the world around us."

Mr Brook was born in Scholes, near Holmfirth, in December 1927.

The son of an insurance agent, he grew up in Barnsley where he went to the boys' grammar school and spent most of his spare time drawing and painting.

He went on to teacher training at Goldsmiths College, part of London University, where he visited exhibitions and galleries, and attended evening classes in life drawing.

After two years in the RAF, Mr Brook took up his first teaching job at a small secondary modern school in Rastrick.

In 1950 he married Molly and the couple had two daughters – Katherine and Alison – and two grandchildren – Laura and Andrew.

He had his first one-man exhibition at the Wakefield City Art Gallery in 1960 – a huge success which received a good review by The Times.

By 1962 Mr Brook was an elected a member of the Royal Society of British Artists and was teaching at Sowerby Bridge Grammar School.

He was 49 when he gave up full-time teaching and by this time his reputation as an artist was widespread.

His career includes being commissioned to design the Oxford University Almanac and exhibiting in London, America and Australia.

An exhibition on Mr Brook's work is continuing at Harrison Lord Gallery as a celebration of his life.

His funeral will be on Friday at Fixby Crem- atorium at 11am. Instead of flowers, there will be collections for the West Yorkshire Forget Me Not Trust and Myeloma UK.