Alfred Leete exhibit opens at Weston Museum with ‘iconic’ original World War One poster

The Leete family gathered around the famous poster by Alfred Leete.Photograph: John Scaife. © Weston

The Leete family gathered around the famous poster by Alfred Leete.Photograph: John Scaife. © Weston Town Council - Credit: Photograph: John Scaife. © Weston Town Council

The artist behind an iconic World War One poster is celebrated in a Weston Museum exhibition.

The family of Alfred Leete and representatives from Weston gathered at the Burlington Road museum for the unveiling of the temporary exhibition on Friday – which will run until January.

Great-nieces and nephews praised the museum for creating such a ‘wonderful’ exhibition for their distant relative who they had all learned about growing up.

The centrepiece of the display is the original copy of the famous Your Country Needs You poster, which is on loan to Weston from the Imperial War Museum.

His great-niece Nikki Hulin said Alfred was her mum’s ‘favourite uncle’ for his charismatic and ‘funny’ personality.

She added: “This exhibition is wonderful, I have got a few bits and pieces but seeing all these drawings I have never seen before is brilliant.

“The museum has taken such care in mounting them properly and framing them, it is gorgeous.”

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Her son Matthew Hulin said: “I grew up surrounded by Alfred’s artwork, A Book Of Dragons was my favourite as a kid.

“It is great recognition for Weston to have this exhibition. Everyone knows the poster no matter where you are from but not about the person behind it – this will rectify that.”

John Crockford-Hawley, chairman of the museum and heritage sub-committee on Weston Town Council, said: “For the first time in the history of any museum in Weston, we have been able to acquire a piece of art of national significance.

“To be able to display something from the Imperial War Museum, which is on loan to us and nobody else from now until January, is quite a coup for us.

“Alfred Leete was a man with great humour – the man behind the icon.”

Claire David, whose husband is the great-nephew of Alfred, said he was an ‘energetic’ man.

She added: “It is wonderful to have this exhibition for Alfred, an honour really.”

Mr Leete was a graphic designer who produced advertising campaigns for companies including the London Underground.

He was once described as ‘the funniest man in the world’ and his cartoons capture the comedy of everyday life and politics.

The exhibition will run until January 13 and is open from 10am-5pm. Entry is free.