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West Country bookmaker Deane dies at the age of 87

Betting ring: where John Deane plied his trade for 60 years
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John Deane, who bet at all the West Country courses for nearly 60 years, has died aged 87.

Deane, who followed his father Harold into the racecourse betting ring, had pitches at many of the courses in the south-west, including Bath, Chepstow, Cheltenham, Exeter, Newton Abbot and Wincanton, along with Goodwood.

He also had two betting shops in Bristol in the 1960s, and stood at Bristol greyhound stadium.

His son Tim Deane, until recently a Ladbrokes course representative, said: "He was an old-fashioned bookmaker and I have been overwhelmed by the kind messages I've received already.

"My dad, who I started to work for when I was 17, went from a little to a lot over the years and bought the pitches owned by Bernard and Joan Redfern, parents of TV hostess Anthea Redfern, at the very first sale of pitches in 1998.

"He was one for laying favourites, so when Tony McCoy came along at Martin Pipe's he was not his biggest fan!"

Deane retired in 2005 and sold all his pitches individually. He leaves his wife Marion, his son Tim and daughter Joanna. The funeral is at Westerleigh Crematorium in Gloucestershire on Friday, April 21 at 11.45am. All are welcome.

He was one for laying the favourites so when Tony McCoy came along at Martin Pipe's he was not his biggest fan
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