Maurice was born in 1887 to John and Dinah Prout in Launceston. His father John Prout was a Oil merchant and Tea Dealer. He joined the staff of ‘The Cornish and Devon Post’ on leaving school, and slowly working his way up to become the papers editor when the then incumbent, Charles Orchard Sharp, fell ill. When Charles passed away in 1942, Maurice along with Arthur Bray Venning took over the running of the paper a role that he would continue until his own death in 1961. He married Lydia James in 1915 but they never had any children. Lydia went blind in 1924 but face this handicap with great courage. After falling ill in August 1953 she suffered a further attack of her illness at the end of January 1954 and died at Launceston Hospital on February 22nd, 1954.
He was a keen caravanner and was Chairman of the Devon and Cornwall Centre of the Caravan Club.
He was a quiet man who said very little allowing his example and integrity to speak for him.
Maurice passed away at his home, 2, Ridgegrove Villas, Launceston, in April 1961. The funeral service, which was attended by the Mayor of Launceston (Councillor Mrs. F. F. Hicks), was held at St. Mary Magdalene Church, being conducted by Canon W. G. Steer. In a short address, Canon Steer paid tribute to Maurice’s life; “He was a kindly and upright man, whose life stood out for all that was best in the Christian belief. The character of the man had been apparent in the columns of the newspaper he edited: ‘you saw in it nothing that was sordid, no banner headlines about murky things: the news was reported accurately, scrupulously and fairly, and that was part of the man himself …. He was a man of honour and integrity’ Deep down in his heart were Christian principles which he carried out; he was a man who could not be bought and a man who had a independent mind. Maurice Prout was a man everyone in Launceston and wider afield honoured, and this was a world in which there were far too few men like him. His passing left a gap, but they could all thank God for his life and quiet witness.”
He left the sum of £13,767 11s. 6d. in his will.