AddThis SmartLayers

Long-serving local reporter bows out after 47 years

A regional journalist with a reputation for honesty and accuracy has retired after almost five decades at the same paper.

Veteran reporter Geoff Staddon (pictured) reported on both news and sport during his 47-career at the Archant-owned North Devon Gazette.

Dubbed ‘Mr Gazette’ by colleagues, he turned his hand to everything from tragic accidents and investigating issues of democracy, before turning his attentions to sports reporting later in his career.

Editor Andy Keeble said Geoff would be missed by his former colleagues.

Said Andy:  “You really couldn’t wish for a better colleague than Geoff.

“His reputation for accuracy and honesty was second to none and he will be sorely missed by everyone at the Gazette – not least for his quick wit, friendly manner and calm persona, even during turbulent times on the newsdesk.”

Geoff started out aged 16, getting a job on the old Bideford Gazette – the North Devon Gazette’s predecessor – on leaving grammar school in 1966.

Back then, the Gazette was paid-for broadsheet weekly paper, produced on typewriters and hot metal setting plates.

Long-serving Bideford councillor and local historian Peter Christie also paid tribute to the dedicated journalist, saying Geoff’s reports could always be relied upon for their accuracy and fairness.

“Geoff was always willing to put councillors on the spot in the nicest possible way. His questions were always searching but never leading and you could always be sure his reports were fair and accurate,” he said.

“If you saw a report with the name Geoff Staddon on it you knew it was one that was worth reading.”

Geoff Staddon and his former colleagues at the North Devon Gazette, who threw him a retirement party

One comment

You can follow all replies to this entry through the comments feed.