14 Facts About Alastair Hetherington


Hector Alastair Hetherington was a British journalist, newspaper editor and academic.


Alastair Hetherington was educated at Gresham's School in Holt, Norfolk, from 1933 to 1937 and then at Corpus Christi College, Oxford, from 1938 to 1940, but his time at Oxford was interrupted by the Second World War.


Alastair Hetherington later took part in the relief of Antwerp and ended his army career as a major in the Intelligence Corps, during which time he wrote a Military Geography of Schleswig-Holstein.


Suez soon proved to be only the first of many causes Alastair Hetherington took up, as he used as his position to campaign for social justice, alleviating the poverty gap between northern and southern England, and nuclear disarmament.


Alastair Hetherington was present at the founding of the Campaign for Nuclear Disarmament, attending preliminary meetings at the house of Lord Simon of Wythenshawe, with Sir Bernard Lovell and Bertrand Russell, but he did not join or support CND.


Alastair Hetherington himself was commuting by train between London and Manchester twice or three times weekly.


Alastair Hetherington pushed for expanded features, including special supplements and the first op-ed page in a British daily.

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Such was his success by this point that Alastair Hetherington won Journalist of the Year at the National Press Awards in 1971.


For more than twenty years Alastair Hetherington wrote leading articles which sought to promote Liberal-Labour co-operation to defeat the Conservatives.


Alastair Hetherington did much to invigorate programme output and appointed a number of specialist News correspondents including Helen Liddell and Chris Baur to try to increase Scotland's presence on the BBC networks.


Alastair Hetherington sought increased financial freedom from the BBC in London.


Alastair Hetherington brought a new style to that office as a hands-on and interventionist chairman, giving critical support to his successor as editor, Peter Preston.


Alastair Hetherington played a substantial part in the appointment of his successor as chairman, Hugo Young.


Alastair Hetherington died on 3 October 1999 and is buried next to his parents in the cemetery in Tillicoultry, just south-east of the war memorial.