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Business journalism loses 'man of great integrity'

A leading business journalist and honorary citizen of Texas whose career spanned half a century has died aged 68.

Frazer Wright was regarded by colleagues as an outstanding journalistic talent, particularly after he turned his hand to industrial and business writing.

Frazer, who lived in Wentworth near Rotherham, spent 53 years as a journalist in South Yorkshire, starting as a trainee at the Barnsley Chronicle in 1957 before joining Sheffield daily The Star.

In 1962, he joined the now defunct Sheffield Morning Telegraph where he spent several years as chief reporter in the paper’s Barnsley office.

Frazer then moved to Sheffield as industrial correspondent before being appointed business editor in 1975 as part of a move to extend the Morning Telegraph’s business coverage.

Prior to the paper’s closure in 1986, he played a leading role in coverage of the miners’ strikes of the 1970s, the 1980 steel strike and the major re-organisation of the industry that followed it, and the year-long miners’ strike which began in 1984.

He would also often appear as an expert commentator on regional and national television and contributed articles for national newspapers and specialist industry magazines.

Following the closure of the Morning Telegraph, Frazer contributed freelance stories and columns about manufacturing to publications including The Star, as well as working as a PR consultant.

He was also a keen traveller and travel writer which led to him to receive honorary citizenship of the State of Texas.

Among those paying tribute were former trade minister and Sheffield MP Richard Caborn.

“He was respected for his objectivity by both the labour side and the employers’ side of industry, and for the fact that everyone knew he had South Yorkshire industry at heart,” he said.

“He was a great guy and a man of great integrity and he was the guru, the expert, on steel.

“The Financial Times, the BBC, all of them came to him for objective comment. He could have gone on to a more lucrative job in London, but he had the industrial base of the north of England at heart.”

  • Frazer, who died after suffering long-term heart problems on 23 December, is survived by his wife Linda. His funeral takes place at 2pm on 8 January at Holy Trinity Parish Church, in Wentworth, followed by a service at Grenoside Crematorium.