A man who spent the whole of his working life in newspapers has died aged 74.
Former Examiner sub-editor and motoring writer Malcolm Robertshaw died at his home in Halifax on Wednesday, July 30.
Born in Halifax, Malcolm grew up in King Cross and attended Heath Boys’ Grammar School.
He was a member of the choir at the local St Paul’s Church and attended choir school in Morecambe.
From there he was selected, aged 13, to spend two weeks at St Paul’s Cathedral in London when the regular choir was on a visit to America.
Malcolm left school at 16 and served a five-year apprenticeship in the print department at the Halifax Evening Courier.
He was promoted to a supervisory role in 1965 and became assistant to the managing director for two years before becoming production manager in 1969.
In the late 1970s and early 1980s he visited the United States to source new printing presses and in 1982 oversaw installation of the new machinery.
In the same year then Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher visited the Courier and was given a guided tour.
Malcolm’s wife Anita told how Malcolm led the tour and even the Iron Lady couldn’t get a word in.
“The story goes that Malcolm did all the talking,” said Mrs Robertshaw. “Not many people got to talk down Margaret Thatcher in her prime.”
Malcolm left the Courier shortly afterwards and joined the Examiner in a temporary position in November, 1984. He accepted a permanent post the following year.
In June, 1988 he became a news sub-editor having crossed from the print room to the newsroom.
As a journalist he quickly rose to become Weekly News editor, TV editor, property editor and, later, motoring editor.
Malcolm again came face-to-face with another VIP when Prince Charles visited the Examiner.
Mrs Robertshaw recalled: “At that point Malcolm held all four editor posts at the same time and the Prince asked him how he did it. ‘With mirrors’ was how Malcolm replied.
“That was Malcolm all over,” said Mrs Robertshaw. “He was a real personality.”
It was as motoring editor that Malcolm found great satisfaction.
“In those days motor launches often meant trips abroad,” said Mrs Robertshaw. “There was one, I think it was for Kia, to St Moritz staying at a hotel we couldn’t have afforded in a million years and there were lots of other trips to the likes of St Tropez.
“Every Wednesday Malcolm had a brand new car delivered to the Examiner, filled with fuel. On a weekend we would drive to places and put the car through its paces so Malcolm could write about it.
“It was a good life then but we will never go back to those times. Malcolm said newspapers had given him a very good living and a very good life.”
Malcolm retired at 65 but continued to work as motoring correspondent for the Examiner until last November.
Malcolm, who married second wife Anita in 1988, leaves a daughter Sharon, 50, a son Tony, 47, and three stepchildren Philip, 52, Tina, 50, and Sarah, 46. He also had 13 grandchildren.
His funeral service will be held at St Paul’s Church, King Cross, on August 18 at 1pm. Donations in lieu of flowers will go to Cancer Research.