Leeds Grammar School. Manchester City News 1932-1934.
After an early career in print journalism, his time as a British Broadcasting Corporation Radio journalist included periods as a war reporter and royal correspondent. He was the first officially accredited court correspondent at Buckingham Palace. He joined the Yorkshire Post at the age of 20.
Four years later, he was editor of the Manchester City News, then worked at the Daily Dispatch, before joining the British Broadcasting Corporation in 1937.
During World World War II, having been sent to replace Richard Dimbleby, he reported on North African battles such as First Rate (at Lloyd's) Alamein and Cassino, for which he was mentioned in dispatches and, in 1946, made a military Officer of the Order of the British Empire (Officer of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire). He appeared as a castaway on the British Broadcasting Corporation Radio programme Desert Island Discs on 29 August 1960.
He published two volumes of autobiography. He died peacefully at home on 3 September 2000.
Married Bess Owen in 1933.