AddThis SmartLayers

Journalism student graduates from course launched by trainer grandfather

A young journalist has graduated from a university course which was launched by his journalism trainer grandfather.

Rory Hill, pictured, has received his BA (Hons) in journalism from Edinburgh Napier University – the course his grandad Bill Allsopp set up in 1976.

Bill, who worked on both regional and national newspapers before moving into training, working for then-Napier College until 1994, died in August at the age of 85.

Rory, 21, paid tribute to him after joining classmates at their graduation ceremony.

Rory Hill

He said: “I was always very close to my grandpa Bill. He had lots of remarkable stories from his years as a journalist, and he was very good at telling them.

“He always said: ‘There’s nothing more important than the story’, and as I got older he would pass on his knowledge to me, including writing tips and interviewing techniques.

“He inspired me to pursue a career in journalism and I like to think that if he bestowed such passion in me long after he retired, he must have inspired those he taught and mentored both as a journalist and a lecturer.

“My granpa always said he made the course very hands-on, and I feel this is still very much the philosophy as we were always pushed to source our own content, be independent and use our initiative.”

Rory now hopes to gain further newsroom experience in order to develop his career.

He added: “Going into my final year without the support of my grandpa was extremely difficult as you can imagine, but overall, I feel it made me work harder so that I would make him proud.”

Allan Boughey, journalism lecturer at Edinburgh Napier, said: “Bill is one of the founding fathers of teaching journalism in Scotland, so it was naturally a real delight to have Rory study with us.

“Back in 1976, it was the only journalism course available in Scotland and was part of the UK-wide National Council for the Training of Journalists system. Over the years, thousands of trainee journalists have learned their craft on the course, many going on to achieve great things, here in Scotland and across the globe.

“So Rory is in great company and it’s absolutely fitting that he should have attended the course that his grandfather helped to establish. I hope Bill would be proud of the highly practical approach we still take – that’s very much part of his legacy here.”