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Former newspaper managing director dies aged 90

A leading figure in the world of Midland newspapers of the 1950s and 60s has died at the age of 90.

Tributes have been paid to Norman Peckett, of Burbage, near Hinckley who was managing director of Watling Publications when it owned the Nuneaton Evening Tribune and Hinckley Journal.

After working as a linotype operator on several national papers, Norman was appointed general manager of the Tribune in the 1950s, later being promoted to managing director.

Ironically his old paper predeceased him, ceasing publication at the end of September having gone from a daily to a free weekly title in recent years.

The now-defunct Nuneaton Evening Tribune in the days when Norman Peckett was its MD

The now-defunct Nuneaton Evening Tribune in the days when Norman Peckett was its MD

Among those paying tribute to Norman was retired Hinckley Times editor Paul Webb, who joined the paper as a trainee reporter when Norman was MD.

He told the paper: “I got to know him well, and often kept wicket to his fiery pace bowling in the many games the Tribune side played back then.

“I was only 16 and thought at the time he was pretty old to be still playing, but I realise now he was only in his late 30s, no great age for a game of cricket.

“He was a firm but fair man and I will always be grateful for the opportunities he gave me.”

Former Bedworth Echo editor Mort Birch, whose own journalistic career also flourished under Norman, added: “He was a man who would give you a right roasting one minute and the next, be buying you a pint if he saw you in the pub.

“We were once on strike and he pulled me to one side during a quiet moment and offered to help out any journalist suffering financially, particularly if they were married, showing the compassionate side of the man.”

Outside journalism, Norman was a vice-chairman of Nuneaton Borough football club before switching codes to become president of Nuneaton RFC.

Norman leaves a son, Graham, and daughter, Susan, as well as five grandchildren.

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  • November 15, 2015 at 11:20 am

    Two great legends gone together. Remember him for his pipe smoking in the office at the Trib in Whitacre Road and his tireless work with Rotary.

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