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Journalism student who was ‘natural’ journalist dies suddenly aged 22

Bradley WalfordA journalism student described as a “natural” journalist has died unexpectedly aged 22.

Tributes have been paid to Bradley Walford after his death left trainers at Leeds Trinity University “shocked and saddened”.

Bradley, pictured, died on Thursday 27 February, but the circumstances surrounding his death have yet to be made public.

Former Yorkshire Post and Yorkshire Evening Post head of news Rebecca Whittington, who lectures at Leeds Trinity, has been among those to pay tribute.

She said: “I was on the interview panel when Bradley first applied for his place here at Leeds Trinity University and from the off, he was a pleasure to work with because of his endearing and charming nature.

“Bradley was a friend to everyone he met in the student cohort, he was outgoing, self-deprecating and quick-witted.

“I speak for all the staff who worked with him when I say how well liked he was. We are deeply shocked and saddened by his death and we would like Bradley’s friends and family to know we are thinking of them at this very sad time.”

Professor Margaret House, the university’s vice-chancellor, added: “We are deeply saddened by the loss of Bradley and our thoughts and prayers are with his family and friends at this extremely difficult time.

“Bradley’s effusive personality made him a natural broadcast journalist. A friendly, outgoing and kind young man, he was endearing, charming and quick-witted.

“He was well liked by students and staff and had a bright future ahead of him. It is tragic that his life was cut short at such a young age.

“A book of condolence for Bradley has been opened in the university chapel for students and staff to write messages for Bradley’s family, and our student mental health and wellbeing team are working to support students and staff.”

Other journalism lecturers to have offered their thoughts include Katherine Blair who said Bradley “charmed all he met”, while Darren Harper described him as an “amazing character” and Paul Marsden called him “a lovely lad who had a big personality”.

Richard Thomas, former lecturer in journalism at Leeds Trinity, posted on Facebook: “This is desperate news. I remember Bradley extremely well. I taught him for one semester and found him to be a fine young man.

“When I left LTU, he went to the trouble of making me a gift and presented it to me quietly, without any fuss. I was touched that he had taken so much trouble over a member of staff that had taught him only for a few weeks.

“It was a gesture typical of his kindness and good nature. The memory of receiving that gift is even more important and cherished now. Deep condolences to his family, friends, and all my dear former students and colleagues at Leeds Trinity University.”

A fundraising page has been set up in Bradley’s memory, with all donations going to his family.