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Editors pay tribute to MD who represented ‘bygone era’

Tim KitchenA regional press chief who in the words of one of his former editors “represented much that was good about a bygone era of newspapers” has died.

Tributes have been paid to Tim Kitchen, left, who served as MD at three different regional dailies across the country.

Tim joined the newspaper industry in 1978 as an advertising sales representative at the Leicester Mercury, and progressed through management posts at the Retford and Gainsborough Times, the Lincolnshire Echo.

After four years in Lincoln, he became deputy managing director at Stoke-on-Trent daily The Sentinel.

In 1993 Tim became MD at the Express & Echo, in Exeter, before moving to take the same post at the Derby Telegraph two years later.

He later served in that role at Bristol United Press Ltd, publishers of the Western Daily Press and Bristol Evening Post, before retiring for health reasons around 2005 after 27 years with Northcliffe.

After leaving the industry, Tim served as a non-executive director of the Mid-Staffordshire General Hospitals NHS Trust and was also president of the Midlands Newspaper Society.

Editors past and present who worked with Tim, who was in his mid-60s, have been among those to pay tribute.

University of Derby head of journalism Keith Perch, who edited the Derby Telegraph, Leicester Mercury and South Wales Echo, posted on Twitter: “Very sad to hear of the passing of Tim Kitchen. Affectionately dubbed The Wadfather, he represented much that was good about a bygone era of newspapers.

“There are many moments I will never forget, almost all of them joyous and almost all of them unthinkable in this day and age.

“As an MD, he enabled our journalism and never once interfered with our autonomy. As a friend, he gave us so many great moments.”

Current Nottingham Post editor Mike Sassi described Tim as “a kind and thoughtful gent, with a tremendous sense of humour”.

He added: “[Tim was] absolutely driven to make his business the best. But definitely one of the nicest people I’ve ever worked with.”

And Mike Lowe, who edited the Bristol Post, Derby Telegraph and Gloucester Citizen, called him “a real pro who understood editorial and always supported us. And a joy to work and play with”.


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  • June 14, 2019 at 4:53 pm

    TIm was all any editor could wish for in a managing director, strong, supportive and a lovely guy.

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  • June 14, 2019 at 5:16 pm

    I met Tim in the mid eighties when he was at the Mercury in Leicester. Tim was a true gentleman. Always smiling and great company, he had time for everyone and was great craic. So sorry to hear of his departing he will be missed. My thoughts and prayers are with his family at this time. RIP

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  • June 17, 2019 at 10:19 am

    Lovely chap. On my first day at the Express & Echo, having moved down to Exeter all the way from Skipton, he made a point of coming over, having a chat, asking if I had settled in okay etc and was always interested, approachable and supportive.

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