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Yorkshire news agency founder dies at 82

A former national newspaper journalist who returned to his Yorkshire roots to set up a successful news agency has died aged 82.

Alan Cooper, who set up the West Riding News Service in 1954, died in Huddersfield Royal Infirmary last week after a long illness.

He began his career at the Shipley Times before moving onto the Yorkshire Post and then the Daily Mirror in Manchester.

But he left the Mirror and set up West Riding News – now WRNS – with fellow journalist Stanley Vaughan.

After six months Stanley left the firm and he was replaced by Stan Solomons from the Surrey Mirror.

Over the next forty years Alan and Stan took the agency from strength to strength, branching out into sports and pictures.

The agency, now based in Dewsbury, was eventually taken over by freelance journalist Martin Shaw in September 1995, but Stan still works for the firm on a consultancy basis.

Paying tribute to his former business partner, Stan told the Yorkshire Evening Post: “We stuck together from 1954 until 1996.

“He was a lot of fun to be with, a very good story teller and he was always great company.

“His main past time was reading – he was very well read and loved walking, until he got too ill.”

Alan leaves his partner of 17 years Wendy, two daughters and two grandchildren. His funeral takes place at Huddersfield Crematorium tomorrow.


Nicola Megson (29/06/2010 10:15:30)
Alan Cooper, fondly remembered – he kept a cool, calm head even when deadline was approaching at breakneck speed. He taught me a great deal.