My husband, Paul Shearer, who has died suddenly aged 54, as the result of an undiagnosed heart condition, was a solicitor who specialised in the field of housing and legal aid in the south-west of England.

Throughout his career, his work focused on those at risk of falling through the cracks in society: the poor, the destitute and the vulnerable – tenants facing eviction or living in unsafe and unsanitary housing, situations that became increasingly common during the recent years of austerity.

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