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Political editor who served rival dailies dies aged 71

Derek BatemanA political journalist who worked for two rival dailies during his career has died aged 71.

Tributes have been paid to Derek Bateman, who served both Edinburgh-based daily the Scotsman and Glasgow title The Herald during his career.

Derek, pictured, went on to become political editor of The Scotsman’s sister title Scotland on Sunday before joining the BBC.

He retired in 2013, but continued to write a blog and broadcast on Scottish politics.

Former Scotland on Sunday editor Kenny Farquharson said: “Before Derek’s time as a fine broadcaster, he was part of the team who launched Scotland on Sunday.

“He was political editor, and he set the tone with his dry, wry, droll humour and unflappable demeanour.

“He was, in turn, generous, spiky and sweet, and a great journalist.”

Selkirk-born Derek began his career teenage journalism trainee at The Scotsman in 1968.

He worked both there and at The Herald before joining Scotland on Sunday in 1988.

After his BBC move, Derek spent a decade as a co-presenter on Good Morning Scotland alongside John Milne.

He also presented BBC weekend programme Newsweek Scotland, and was a reporter and presenter for Newsnight Scotland.

BBC Scotland’s head of news Gary Smith said: “His well-known voice kept our audiences informed – and Scotland’s politicians on their toes – throughout his time on Good Morning Scotland, and on our television output too.

“In addition to his illustrious broadcasting career, Derek was previously a highly regarded print journalist.”

Scotland’s First Minister Nicola Sturgeon added: “This is such terribly sad news. Derek was without doubt one of the finest journalists of his generation in Scotland, both broadcast and print.

“He had such a sharp, insightful intellect and a warm wit too. My condolences to his loved ones.”

Derek was married to former BBC journalist Judith Mackay and the couple had two daughters, Hannah and Clara.

Mr Bateman also had two daughters, Eilidh and Lucy, from his first marriage to Alison, who died in 2001.