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John Caruth
Northern Irelnd
Retired journalist with a forever young feeling
Interests: Reading, blogging, walking, talking, music and that means Bob Dylan, John Hiatt, Marshall Crenshaw and all the oldies like Buddy, Elvis, Johnny and talking again ... keep smiling
Recent Activity
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It is early morning ....I have had breakfast and sitting at my laptop and also beside a bookshelf with of lot of read and some half read books ...among the collection are five paperbacks by my dear, gone and lost... Continue reading
Posted Jul 27, 2022 at TheCopyboys
An email from Alastair tells us about the closure of another newspaper ... sports edition, not unlike the Ireland's Saturday Night or The Pink as we also called it....You may need to copy and paste the link into your browser to see it. https://www.theguardian.com/media/2022/jul/23/final-whistle-for-the-pink-un-british-footballs-last-surviving-matchday-newspaper-closes
Toggle Commented Jul 24, 2022 on Mr Hack 192 at TheCopyboys
This comes from Derek Black who seems unable to put it up himself, for some reason .... "Hi John, That is a super picture from my era at the Tele......could name practically everyone in it like they were family members, which indeed they were. A couple of theories as to the occasion: Reopening of the canteen after a make-over? Posters refer to Eddie Sterling - was it to mark his promotion to picture editor? (after Leslie Powell) I was not able to comment as I could not log in. Will try again later. Maybe this is putting others off commenting - we seem to have lost our regulars. Hope you are in sizzling form. Derek"
Toggle Commented Jul 23, 2022 on Mr Hack 192 at TheCopyboys
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Well, we're still here ...alive and well. Thought I put up a new Mr Hack for the sake of it and because I found a photograph in the files of a bunch of us gathered in the old canteen in... Continue reading
Posted Jul 9, 2022 at TheCopyboys
Thanks Derek ... Should have mentioned that the person hidden by Tommy Edgar's head is John Kane and I hope he is alive and well. About Eugene ... Derek is right. He liked to challenge people or should I say staff. He asked my immediate boss Billy Graham to write a life story of a sea that got washed up dead on a beach in Donegal or Sligo... Billy did it with style which pleased Eugene and hopefully our readers who got to read it when it was published. I remember, too, Des Morrow but more particularly his Dad who was agriculture correspondent. He was a busy soul but he could carry on a conversation with you and one with someone on his telephone .... both at the same time. It was as alarming as it was funny but it happened.
Toggle Commented May 16, 2022 on Mr Hack 191 at TheCopyboys
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Martin Wallace: former deputy editor of the Belfast Telegaph By Alf McCreary Martin Wallace, who died recently in England, was a former Deputy Editor of the Belfast Telegraph and later a senior staff member with the BBC in London. He... Continue reading
Posted May 2, 2022 at TheCopyboys
It was always a good experience bumping into Stewart when we were both buying our morning paper at the Spar on the Rathmore Road in Bangor West. Always good to have a chat and it was good when he commented on the blog. Sadly those days are now gone....
Toggle Commented May 1, 2022 on Stewart Mackay: a tribute at TheCopyboys
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Mr Hack 191 ....getting nearer 200....found this old photo of Jack Bennett's leaving departure from the Belfast MTelegraph receiving his gift from Tommy Edgar with Helen Russell (later Helen Greenaway) and to Jack's left Stanley Aiken watching. The photo features... Continue reading
Posted May 1, 2022 at TheCopyboys
Martin Lindsay sent me a report on Jim's funeral which was well attended Moving tributes were paid to Jim by his uncle, former Chief Constable Sir Ronnie Flanagan and his son James. Among the big turnout of former colleagues of Jim were: Roy Lilley, Martin Lindsay, Martin Breen, Noel Doran, Jim Gracey, Robin Morton, Sue Corbett, Mary Kelly, Chris Kelly, Michael Donnelly, Noel McAdam, Ivan McMichael, Ivan Little, Louis McConnell, Fiona McGarry, Robert Fenton, Ken Reid, Liam Creagh, Alan Lewis, Richard Sullivan, John Hicks, Stephen Gordon and David McKittrick.
Toggle Commented Apr 26, 2022 on Jim Flanagan: a tribute at TheCopyboys
Stewart's death is another closing chapter on old journalism ...the men and women who nd jobs in newspapers and worked at reporting and editing and, as I fondly did .... designing pages and supplements. I still have hard copies of several supplements I organised and put together, with help from others including Eddie McIlwaine - a force to be reckoned with! He was enthusiastic and always keen to sit hitting his typewriter keys and later his laptop. He told me once he was writing his life story and I could edit it and dot the i's and the t's. It didn't seem to happen because no maniscript turned up at my address. Too bad.... I am quite sure it would have been entertaining....As I finish typing I can only send out a request to two of my former welcome and worthwhile contributors to the copyboys (Michael and Mitchell).....where are you now?
Toggle Commented Apr 25, 2022 on Mr Hack 190 at TheCopyboys
Stewart's death is another closing chapter on old journalism ...the men and women who nd jobs in newspapers and worked at reporting and editing and, as I fondly did .... designing pages and supplements. I still have hard copies of several supplements I organised and put together, with help from others including Eddie McIlwaine - a force to be reckoned with! He was enthusiastic and always keen to sit hitting his typewriter keys and later his laptop. He told me once he was writing his life story and I could edit it and dot the i's and the t's. It didn't seem to happen because no maniscript turned up at my address. Too bad.... I am quite sure it would have been entertaining....As I finish typing I can only send out a request to two of my former welcome and worthwhile contributors to the copyboys (Michael and Mitchell).....where are you now?
Toggle Commented Apr 25, 2022 on Mr Hack 189 at TheCopyboys
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Sadly, another departure this month of April. Stewart Mackay, once a member of New Letter 's reporting team and later a stalwart in the RUC's Press Office until his retirement. He was also happily a contributor to the copyboys blog... Continue reading
Posted Apr 24, 2022 at TheCopyboys
Hundreds of mourners paid tribute to former Belfast Telegraph deputy editor Jim Flanagan at his funeral yesterday. The 61-year-old, who died on Tuesday, was also a former editor of the Sunday Life. He was laid to rest at Carnmoney Cemetery after a service in St Patrick’s Church of Ireland in Jordanstown. He is survived by his wife Colette, son James and daughter Suzanne. Ulster Rugby captain Iain Henderson, who is married to Suzanne, helped carry his father-in-law’s coffin from the church. Mr Flanagan’s uncle, ex-RUC Chief Constable Sir Ronnie Flanagan, recalled Jim’s early days and his successful journalistic career during the service with son James describing how his father was a devoted family man.
Toggle Commented Apr 23, 2022 on Jim Flanagan: a tribute at TheCopyboys
Ah, there you go .... I was yesterday enjoying the company of two, now just retired after years of service at the Belfast Telegraph who also remembered Jim but now with such glowing memories as Mr Gracey's nor like the comments and praise that Robin has been emaied and which I now reproduce here for historic purposes..... Dear all, Here's a compilation of some of the emails I've received from colleagues following Jim's death. All very moving and I thought worth sharing. I'm hoping now to attend the service at Jordanstown tomorrow morning. Regards Robin From Noel McAdam: It's so sad. I would have been Jim's boss when he first started as a fresh faced former Annadale pupil in the East Antrim Times office in Carrick. He was always so enthusiastic and could hardly wait to get up to join the Telegraph team. He was also very easy to get on with and was a natural. When I eventually joined the Tele Jim was my boss and would still come into the office on Sundays when he took up the Ballymena job. Lorna Rea: I am deeply saddened to hear of Jim Flanagan's death. I'm struggling to process it to be honest. I saw him not that long ago at Whitehead Golf Club and we had a great chat. He told me all about the massive heart attack he had on the golf course and his subsequent recovery. I hadn't seen him since before Covid struck, so I was delighted to catch up with him again. I have many fond memories of 'Big Jim' back in the days of 'The Weeklies' and I always knew that he would rise up quickly through the ranks to achieve success in the newspaper world. Barry White: Very sorry to hear this, Robin. He was so upbeat when saw him two meets ago. Very nice guy, always easy to get on with. Alf McCreary: The death of our esteemed colleague Jim is tragic. In recent months I met him regularly at the Jordanstown foreshore where he walked regularly for his necessary daily exercise. He was invariably witty, well-informed, and great company, and he seemed to be coping well-given the extensive surgery and heart trouble he had endured. I was struck most of all by his great and unassuming courage and his continued zest for life. His wife and family have lost a remarkable human being. Ed Curran: Thank you keeping me in touch with the very sad news about our friend Jim. I heard about his passing from Martin but can’t believe he has gone at such a young age. Such a great example of a journalist who understood the community he served. Korky Erskine: I am so sorry to hear about Jim Flanagan's death. Although I did not know him as well as you did, Robin, I have long admired his many talents as a fine journalist. Such sad news. Mary Kelly: Robin, that’s terrible news about Jim Flanagan. He was looking so well when I saw him at a recent coffee morning. I've done my duty to the man by reprinting these remarks....
Toggle Commented Apr 22, 2022 on Jim Flanagan: a tribute at TheCopyboys
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Sad news to report....the death of Jim Flanagan, a colleague for a long time at the Belfast Telegraph...Jim Gracey provided the obituary from today's paper. I would only add my condolences to Jim's wife Colette and he family and he... Continue reading
Posted Apr 20, 2022 at TheCopyboys
Typos galore .... apologies again for that.
Toggle Commented Apr 13, 2022 on Mr Hack 190 at TheCopyboys
Another new Mr Hack .... apologies for the delay in getting it up, but I read an interesting story in the online Belfast Telegraph and here it is: Belfast Telegraph publisher launches search for aspiring journalists to join new trainee... Continue reading
Posted Apr 13, 2022 at TheCopyboys
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Sad news reaches me about the sad death of Ian Trevithick... a good Telegraph photographer who has died after suffering an illness for a long time. He was a pleasant, helpful soul and the best I can do for him... Continue reading
Posted Mar 20, 2022 at TheCopyboys
Stewart contacted me with the observation that it is difficult to get into this blog ....I don't see how, exactly....you just type a password in Typepad or Facebook or the other one and lo and behold you get in to comment ....
Toggle Commented Feb 9, 2022 on Mr Hack 189 at TheCopyboys
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A new photograph, courtesy of the Daily Telegraph who ran a story about Charles Dickens skill at his own shorthand invention which has taken decades of struggles by shorthand experts to decipher it. The story headline reads.... How codebreakers' curiosity... Continue reading
Posted Feb 7, 2022 at TheCopyboys
It's been a while since I put anything up....almost forgot I still had this copyboys blog running and there's been no activity from anyone else so maybe I was wrong to keep it going in this state and should have simply pulled the plug on it. Kept it going, I guess in the hope that someone out there would volunteer to bring the whole thing back to life and open it up to it glories past. It seems not....
Toggle Commented Feb 4, 2022 on Mr Hack 185, 2022.... at TheCopyboys
Sad news to report .... the death of John Savage, editor of the Newtownards Chronicle for 27 years. He was only 66 years old. A tragic loss to his his partner Julie and his daughters Sarah and Rachel, and son Jonathan. My deepest codolences to them and to John's other family and friends. John succeeded Norman Boal as editor of the Chronicle in around 1970 and he has worked before that on the reporting team of the Co. Down Spectator - a good learning ground for a young journalist. There is specialiast in reporting Ards footnall matches and he came a music critics, too. The current editor of both the Spectator and the Chronicle is Paul Symington who is doing a dificult but stirrring job making both papers very readable and buyable, too. On a personal note, when I worked at the now deceased Newtownards Spectator our rival opposition was edited by Bob McNinch with Norman as his deputy. Norman used to give me lifts to joint markings and was even known (very occasionally!!) to take me home before always warning me that "this is the last time ...." He never kept that threat. Ps... Norman didn't do shorthand but he was a speed writer and once a judge at the Newtowards Quarter Sessions on Regents Street asked him to read note t clarify a legal poiint and a disagrement between two barristers. Norman kindly obliged.Happyp memories at this sad time....
Toggle Commented Jan 13, 2022 on Mr Hack 185, 2022.... at TheCopyboys
Another note from Alf ...."John Thanks-it is actually Joe Oliver who has died! I never could distinguish between the two. One fo them went to Canada at one stage. Sorry about a diminishing Copy Boys but you can' run it for ever. Big changes in the BT- I wonder how the circulation is going. Best wishes..."
Toggle Commented Jan 7, 2022 on Mr Hack 185, 2022.... at TheCopyboys
News reaches me via the deadly email ....this time from Alf McCreary that he is finding it difficult to get information to write an obituary for Billy Oliver who, apparently, has died....anyone out there who can help Alf, please let him or me know. I have sent him Ivan Little's email address to seek advice and help.
Toggle Commented Jan 6, 2022 on Mr Hack 185, 2022.... at TheCopyboys
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I am wanting to renew after Christmas and wanting also to plug a book now available on the internet to bur for £20...It's called The Chameleon Poet and subtitled Bob Dylan's Search for Self and it was written a long... Continue reading
Posted Jan 3, 2022 at TheCopyboys