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Journalist who 'mentored' Prime Minister has died

A former Scottish news agency chief who “mentored” Gordon Brown in his early political career has died.

Tom Donald, 78, was born and bred in Dunfermline and ran the Fife News Agency, the family firm he took over following the death of his father.

He was also a columnist who wrote a popular diary piece called ‘Tom’s Kingdom’ for the Sunday Mail.

Mr Donald was a staunch supporter of the Labour party and longtime National Union of Journalists member who counted the Prime Minister among his protégés.

The naval base at nearby Rosyth, near Dunfermline, was thriving during the 1950s and Mr Donald once had a run in with the Duke of Edinburgh which ended with him and the photographer taking a swim in the Firth of Forth.

Mr Donald was educated in Dunfermline and served with the army in North Africa and Cyprus before leaving the military aged 20.

He was a passionate football fan and could often be found in the press box at East End Park, home of Dunfermline Athletic FC.

Later in his later he moved into broadcasting, working for BBC radio and the BBC TV magazine show ‘A Quick Look Round’.

He didn’t retire until he was into his 70s and is survived by four daughters and five grandchildren.

  • You can leave your memories of Tom at Lasting Tribute.