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Former editor and Guild president dies aged 78

A ‘fearless’ editor and columnist who was awarded an MBE for his services to journalism has died aged 78.

Derek Mosey, below, was editor of the Morecambe Visitor for 30 years after spells with papers in Yorkshire and Hertfordshire.

Born and educated in Keighley, Derek began his journalism career with the Craven Herald before doing National Service with the Army Intelligence Corps in Austria where he met his future Heidi.

He later returned to the Craven Herald for a short spell before joining the Bradford Telegraph and Argus and running its Morecambe office for four years.

Derek then spent four years with Leeds daily the Yorkshire Evening Post before moving to the Hertford Advertiser.

After a brief ten-month stint with the Advertiser, Derek was approached by Visitor owners the Caunt family to become acting editor, and subsequently editor, in 1962 where he stayed until retirement in 1992.

Derek established himself as a first-class leader of the town’s newspaper, ensuring it played an influential role in promoting the best interests of the resort and its residents.

A former president of the North West area of the British Guild of Editors, he was awarded the MBE in the 1990 New Year Honours for his services to journalism.

A former colleague said: “Derek was a fearless editor. He believed it was The Visitor’s duty to protect the ratepayers’ interests and had no hesitation in taking on the powers-that-be, particularly the local and county councils, with whom he had several spectacular clashes.

“His ‘Mustard and Cress’ comment column was essential reading on a Wednesday morning, guaranteed to give some bureaucrat or other a bad bout of indigestion.

“He was fiercely loyal to his staff and took great pleasure in following the progress of his young protégés here and overseas.”

Derek played rugby for Skipton and turned out for the Bare Cricket Club, also serving as chairman of Morecambe Cricket Club.

It was during this difficult time that he helped secure a new clubhouse and safeguard the club’s future.

Derek is survived by his wife Heidi, son Anthony and daughters Angela and Ruth and six grandchildren.

His funeral starts at 1.15pm on Tuesday, December 2, at Lancaster Crematorium. Donations are invited to Macmillan Nurses.