Former well-known Guardian newspaper editor Derek Hunt has died at the age of 74.

Derek, who lived in Warrington all his life, died on July 11.

He was born in Winwick Road before moving to Peacock Avenue, Warrington, after marrying Jean in 1965 and they moved to their present home in Mapplewell Crescent, Great Sankey, in 1969.

Derek and Jean have one son, Paul, and one grandson, Ethan.

After leaving St Anne’s Primary and Junior Schools he went to Bewsey Secondary Modern School and it was while helping to produce a school newspaper that he decided he wanted to become a journalist, previously thinking that he wanted to be a vicar.

He attended Miss Knowles’s Secretarial School on Orford Green in Warrington where he was the only boy in a class of 20 learning to touch type and there was a similar situation in the shorthand class.

It was probably the typing and shorthand qualifications which resulted in him landing a job as a trainee reporter with the Cadishead and Irlam Guardian.

He continued shorthand classes and obtained 150 words per minute.

After 18 months he was transferred to the Warrington Guardian as deputy chief reporter and remained there for just over three years.

He then joined the Lancashire Evening Post in Wigan as a reporter and took charge of offices in Warrington, St Helens and Leigh before returning to Wigan as News Editor.

He was later appointed Assistant Editor of this evening newspaper.

Although offered employment on several national newspapers after supplying them with stories over the years, he preferred to work and live locally with involvement and commitment to the local community.

After 13 years with the Evening Post Derek was approached to return to the Warrington Guardian Series to help with the launch of a new title.

Following this he was appointed editor of the Cadishead and Irlam Guardian, followed by editorships of the Newton and Golborne News, Runcorn Guardian and the Northwich Guardian.

His appointment at Northwich later resulted in him being made Group Editor for the Guardian’s Mid-Cheshire editions including Northwich, Winsford, Middlewich and Knutsford Guardians.

His role was later expanded to take overall control of these titles plus the Altrincham, Sale, Crewe, Nantwich and Congleton Guardians.

One of Derek’s specialities was writing about live entertainment and he interviewed many stars.

After 36 years in the newspaper industry, Derek started his own public relations consultancy and one client obtained was Vale Royal Borough Council.

After three months the council created and offered him the role of press and public relations officer, a post he held until he retired in June of 2002.

Derek was a prominent Freemason in Warrington and throughout the Masonic Province of Wast Lancashire.

He was editor of the province’s magazines and website and was the press and communications officer for several years.

He was appointed and invested as a Past Provincial Grand Director of Ceremonies by HRH the Duke of Kent.

Derek was involved with many organisations including being a director of the Cheshire Board of the Prince’s Trust.