Newspaper stalwart Alan Curren dies suddenly aged 85

A former news editor of the Chorley and Leyland Guardian has died suddenly after a short illness aged 85.

Tuesday, 25th July 2017, 8:00 am
Updated Monday, 11th September 2017, 11:54 am
News conference (left to right) Peter Gillibrand, Eddie Jackson (partially obscured), Paul Bolton, Dennis Taylor, Alan Curran, Peter Tottey and George Birtill Read more at:

Alan John Curren was a much-loved husband, dad, granddad and a friend to many.

The Rivington and Blackrod Grammar School student first cut his teeth as cub reporter at the Guardian in 1947.

Alan joined the weekly paper as a fresh-faced 16-year-old.

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It marked the beginning of an exciting career in journalism which would take him to the Bolton Evening News and the Telegraph in Manchester.

He returned to the Guardian as a news editor at the behest of George Birtill, who was the editor of the newspaper from 1946 until 1977.

Former Chorley Guardian reporter David Nowell worked for Alan as a teenager in the 70s.

He said: “Alan was a great guy - an old-school journalist and a pleasure to work for.

“I learned so much from him.

“He taught us all to treat everyone with respect no matter how high or low their social status, but never to be intimidated by power.

“He was a gentleman who recognised hard work.

“If fact, he wasn’t adverse to shutting the Chorley Guardian office after the paper had gone to press and taking us all to the pub.

“Anyone calling at the office would be told we were having staff meeting.”

Editor at the Sunday Mirror and Sunday People Gary Jones also enjoyed his time working with Mr Curren.

He said: “I worked on the Chorley Guardian many years ago and fondly remember news editor Alan Curren, a stalwart of the newspaper, who loyally served the readers and residents of Chorley for many decades.”

Over the years Mr Curren saw big changes to the newspaper industry because of the changes in technology - it went from metal production to computers. Throughout his career Alan had a couple of breaks from the newsroom.

In 1953 his time at the Guardian was cut short when he was called up for National Service.

Another time he and his wife, Vina, went on to run the corner shop on Seymour Street for two years.

Alan retired as news editor of the Guardian in 1992 and lived with Vina in Horwich.

He died at Royal Bolton Hospital on July 6.

Mr Curren’s funeral was held at Chorley Unitarian Chapel on Tuesday, July 25.