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Ex-editor publishes tale of daily journalist’s sexual obsession

 cull-valley-coverA former regional editor’s account of a fictional daily journalist’s sexual obsession has been published in printed form.

John Wheatcroft’s Here in the Cull Valley examines Teddy Beresford’s relationships, and non-relationships, with women as he reviews an unfulfilled life while time stands still in the seconds before he dies.

In the book John explores several unusual narrative devices, including stories and features written by Beresford’s friends and colleagues from the fictional Cull Valley Evening Gazette in West Yorkshire, and from a national publication that exists only in his head.

John began his career on the Rochdale Observer in 1979 before moving on to sister weeklies the Todmorden News and Hebden Bridge Times, where he served as editor for four years.


Of the book, he said: “I set out to tell the story of a more-or-less decent man who is destroyed by his sexual obsession with a woman he doesn’t even like, and by his struggle with a troubled past.

“Here in the Cull Valley is not a book about journalism. However, the format I’ve chosen and my own experiences on newspapers does give me an opportunity to provide a picture of life on a regional publication in an industry which is on the cusp of real crisis.”

After leaving the News and the Times, John worked as a sub-editor at the Yorkshire Evening Press between 1987 and 1990 before taking a break from journalism to work in further education teaching.

In 1994, he returned to the Evening Press on a part-time basis where he remained for 15 years until being made redundant in 2009. He also spent several years subbing part-time at the Northern Echo during this time.

Here in the Cull Valley is priced at £10, available direct from the publisher or other outlets.

The book was published for Kindle four years ago, but has now been published physically by York-based Stairwell Books.