Tributes to a talented and popular cartoonist

FAMILY and friends of a talented political cartoonist who died aged 68 have paid tribute to him.

Phil Evans, whose work appeared mainly in the Socialist Worker, moved to Hastings in 1993 to be closer to his mother, Nina, who passed away in 2000.

Born in Dewsbury, West Yorkshire, in 1946, Phil was brought up in London, Uganda and Aberdeen, and leaving grammar school at 17 he went on to attend Sunderland Art College and later Leeds College of Art.

Kate Evans, Phil’s sister, said: “Phil was always happiest with a pen and paper in his pocket - he drew wherever he went.”

Phil’s first political cartoons were in opposition to the Vietnam War and the Russian invasion of Czechoslovakia. He went on to collaborate with British Pakistani journalist Tariq Ali, producing Trotsky for Beginners in 1980.

Living in Warrior Square in the 1990s, Phil moved to the West Hill in 2001 where he remained until his death.

Paul Hoyle, of Pevensey Road, a friend of Phil’s, said: “Phil was a highly talented and intelligent man; read anything he could lay his hands on; did cryptic crosswords (in the Guardian and Independent); and played chess.

“He was a familiar figure in many pubs in St Leonards and Hastings, where he would sit with a pint of Guinness or Directors and his drawing pad and pen, either drawing cartoons for his clients or making sketches of the people around him.

“Always sociable, he was happy to chat to all around him or, especially, to join in with any political debate.”

He is survived by his sister, Kate, brother, Jonathan, and his three granddaughters.