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Tributes paid to “polite and kind” Big Issue vendor

Andrew Kieser, 36, sold the magazine in Bournemouth for 14 years and will be greatly missed by staff and his customers

We are saddened to share the news of the death of popular Big Issue vendor Andrew Kieser.

Andrew, 36, who sold the magazine outside Topshop in Bournemouth on and off for 14 years, sadly passed away over the Christmas period.

He was described by Big Issue staff in Bournemouth as a “polite and kind” person, who was doing his best to address personal issues.

Simon Chilcott, head of service development for The Big Issue in Bournemouth, said Andrew will be greatly missed by staff, volunteers, vendors and his customers.

“Andrew was such a polite and kind individual who will be sadly missed by The Big Issue team, vendors and the many customers he had spoken to over the years. These last few years had been especially tough for Andy due to his son’s genetic condition, also his own housing issues. He was a doting father who tried his hardest to juggle life so he could spend as much time as possible with his young son.”

Simon added: “We have a lovely volunteer who bakes cakes for the vendors and one of Andy’s guilty pleasures was a slice of cake and a cup of coffee, he also loved discussing with our volunteer what cake to make next.”

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In his My Pitch interview in The Big Issue two years ago, Andrew said he had struggled off and on with addiction, which in the past had cost him a job, relationship and home. He had sold the magazine at various times as and when he needed to, and his ambition was to spend more time with his son, who has mitochondrial DNA depletion syndrome.

On a Facebook post announcing Andrew’s death his ex-partner said that their son Malachi, aged six, “loved his dad very much and his dad loved him.”

Andrew had been a keen pianist as a youngster, and had as an adult returned to his passion for playing piano, performing in church occasionally. He spoke in his My Pitch interview of his love for classical music, his favourite composer Beethoven, and recommended readers listen to Moonlight Sonata as an introduction.

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