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Journalist switches clubs as he succeeds long-serving football writer

Leigh Curtis newA football writer who lost his journalist father five months ago has shared his emotions after landing a new role.

Leigh Curtis has revealed he will take over as the Derby Telegraph’s Derby County writer from Steve Nicholson, who is leaving after 37 years covering the club.

Leigh, pictured, has spent the past seven years covering Notts County for the Nottingham Post and worked for the Lincolnshire Echo before that.

He becomes only the Telegraph’s fourth lead Derby County writer in 56 years after George Edwards, Gerald Mortimer and Steve.

Leigh’s new role has brought back fond family memories for him because the first time he entered a press box was with his father Adrian, also a journalist, at Derby’s old Baseball Ground home.

Adrian died suddenly in December aged 63 following a distinguished career in both the regional and national press.

Posting about his new job on Twitter, Leigh wrote: “So after seven years of covering Notts, my time is coming to an end after accepting an offer to become the new Derby County writer.

“It’s been a privilege to have covered the world’s oldest professional club for the last seven years.

“I will still be covering the play-offs before handing the baton over, but this has all happened so quickly that I have yet to tell my own mother.

“Notts are a wonderful football club and the supporters have been a different class. Many have become friends and I hope to sign off knowing they have reclaimed their place in the Football League.”

Leigh went on to pay tribute to his father, who worked on titles including the Lincolnshire Echo, Shoot, the Mail on Sunday, Evening Standard and the Press Association during his career, and had spent five years with the Cambridge Independent at the time of his death.

He added: “It’s very emotional because the first press box I ever stepped foot in was the Baseball Ground in 1997 when I shadowed my dad for a week when he was working for Shoot and the Mail on Sunday.

“He was always my first call when anything happened in my career. I’d give anything to speak to him today.

“Five months after his death, it really doesn’t get any easier, particularly on days like today. But I am looking forward to getting my feet under the table at Derby where Nico is an incredibly tough act to follow.”