The Accidental Editor: How A Boy Who Only Ever Wanted To Go To Sea Ended Up Running A Provincial Daily Newspaper

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9781456788179: The Accidental Editor: How A Boy Who Only Ever Wanted To Go To Sea Ended Up Running A Provincial Daily Newspaper

How a boy who only ever wanted to go to sea ended up running a provincial daily newspaper The Accidental Editor is the autobiography of a man who never wanted to be a journalist . . . until he was one. Richard Harris became a reporter on his local weekly paper only because it seemed a slightly better bet than shovelling horse manure on a mushroom farm, which was his introduction to working life. Almost immediately he realised that it was the job he was cut out for - and not just because it was through it that he chanced to meet the woman who was to become the love of his life. The Accidental Editor - set in an age before newspapers were taken over by the money men, and when journalism was still great fun - is a story of tragedy and humour, of excitement and frustration, and of hard work and unlikely lucky chances. It is a story of memorable characters - from the inspiring editors he worked under to the world famous celebrities he met along the way. But most of all it is a story of how a string of coincidences, good luck and being in the right place at the right time can take a man to places he never intended to go to. Cover illustration: Ray Straw www.theaccidentaleditor.com

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For 25 years Richard Harris worked on local and regional newspapers - starting as a trainee on the Weston-super-Mare Mercury in Somerset, before moving to the Bristol-based Western Daily Press where he worked as a reporter for three years before heading north as a features sub editor on the Nottingham Evening Post - the newspaper that pioneered 'new technology' in the U.K. . He stayed in Nottingham for 17 years, being promoted first to news editor, then assistant editor, before making an ill-fated leap to become editor of the weekly Cumberland News and the Evening News & Star in Carlisle, a position he held for three years until he was sacked in 1993. He and his family were so happy living in Cumbria that, when he lost his job, he was determined not to leave the area. So he decided to turn back the clock and become a reporter again - this time as a freelance. He has run a successful one-man news agency ever since. Richard has been married to Tricia, whom he met while working in Somerset, for 38 years and they live in a small rural village a few miles from Carlisle. They have two grown-up sons, a daughter and one grand-daughter. He enjoys a typical Cumbrian rustic lifestyle, with ducks and hens in the garden and buzzards, woodcock and pheasants in the woodland which surrounds his house. He supports Carlisle United - but not as much as Bristol City, whom he has followed for more than 45 years - and recently, after five years' trying, qualified as a solo glider pilot.

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