AddThis SmartLayers

Weekly editor who became best-selling author dies aged 80

Guy Bellamy

A former weekly newspaper editor who later became a best-selling author has died at the age of 80.

Guy Bellamy, left, was editor of a number of titles in the Surrey area, including the Surrey & Hants News, and also worked on Fleet Street during his time in journalism.

His first novel, the Secret Lemonade Drinker, was published in 1977 and his final 14th one, the Secret Vodka Drinker, was released in 2012.

Guy died at the end of last month after an illness and newspaper publisher Philip Davies, who worked with him at a number of titles, has paid tribute to him.

Philip, who owns the Woking News & Mail, said: “Like all good journalists, Guy made friends and contacts from all walks of life, including MI5 operatives, famous actors and failed politicians. Guy was godfather to my youngest daughter.

“The world of media has lost a great talent and is all the poorer for it.”

After leaving school, Guy joined the RAF for two years’ National Service then became a journalist, working first at local newspapers in Surrey and Hampshire.

He became the youngest sub-editor at the Daily Express at the age of 24 then later joined The Sun as a sub in 1970.

Philip said he first met Guy in 1966 after Guy had just been promoted to editor of the Surrey & Hants News, where he had become the manager.

He said: “Guy had an all round flair for news, sub editing and page layout that few of his cohorts equaled at national or regional level.

“He held court every evening at the Bush Hotel where he picked up gossip and news that invariably found it’s way into the next issue, often under the pseudonym of Frank Scribe, a weekly column he co-wrote with the very talented Keith Dolley.”

Philip launched a national weekly tabloid paper, Revue, in September 1979 and Guy became the first editor of the title, bringing with him several of The Sun’s editorial team.

The following year, Guy became editor of another title started by Philip, The Independent – a free weekly broadsheet circulating in Guildford and district, which was launched within a week of conception.

Later in 1980, Guy became editor of a relaunched version of the Surrey & Hants News as a free midweek edition of the Farnham Herald, when his Frank Scribe column was revived.

One comment

You can follow all replies to this entry through the comments feed.
  • August 10, 2015 at 9:59 am

    Only recently got into his books – mostly about people driven by money and lust – and very good they were too, with some great jokes! RIP Guy

    Report this comment

    Like this comment(19)