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Globe-trotting former journalism lecturer dies aged 70

John Herbert

A retired journalism professor who trained reporters for almost 40 years has died following a battle with cancer.

Father-of-three John Herbert, aged 70, taught aspiring young reporters at Staffordshire University for more than a decade.

Born in Queensland, Australia, in 1942, John got his first job in journalism working for the New Zealand Broadcasting Corporation before moving to England in 1969 to work for the BBC World Service in London.

There, he met his wife Margaret, who was from Sheffield, and soon became a trainer at the BBC.

Together, they moved to Singapore where John worked at the Singapore Broadcasting Corporation, going on to become head of Classic FM in his home country, working for the Australian Broadcasting Corporation.

He even taught journalism in Hong Kong before moving to Sheldon, Derbyshire, and finished his career as a lecturer at Staffordshire University.

The university’s head of school for film, sound and vision Christopher Priestman paid tribute.

“This is sad news. I have fond memories of joining the university at the same time as John in 1998,” he said.

“I worked alongside him as he energetically set about developing the first journalism awards to be offered by the university, which of course have since gone from strength to strength.”

For the past nine years, John had also served on the Peak District National Park Authority, having represented parishes since 2003.

He became  a member of the planning committee in 2007, and was elected as chairman in 2010.

He died at Ashgate Hospice, Chesterfield, on December 9.

A funeral will be held at Sheldon Church on December 21, from 1.30pm.