Alan Whicker dies aged 87

The veteran broadcaster, Alan Whicker has died. The 87 year old spent years making programmes for Yorkshire Television, including the famous Whicker's world.

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Ex-ITV boss: 'There will never be another' Alan Whicker

Veteran broadcaster Alan Whicker's contribution to British broadcasting is "immeasurable", former ITV and BBC chairman Michael Grade said today.

Mr Grade said:

Alan's contribution to the golden age of British broadcasting is immeasurable. His highly individualistic style belied the sharpest journalistic brain.

He was one of our greatest observers of human behaviour. His listening skills, his sharp and spare commentary writing talents have never been matched.

He managed always to combine the highest quality with popularity. Much imitated but never equalled, there will never be another.

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Tributes flood in for inspirational travel broadcaster

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Alan Whicker's rise to fame

Broadcaster Alan Whicker was known for his global travels during a distinguished TV career which stretched nearly 60 years. Here's a look back at his rise to fame:

  • Alan Donald Whicker was born in Cairo, Egypt, on August 2 1925
  • He moved to England as a young child after the death of his father
  • He attended Haberdashers' Aske's School
  • Whicker was was commissioned as an officer in the Devonshire Regiment during the Second World War, serving as a captain
  • After the war he became a journalist and broadcaster, acting as a newspaper correspondent in the Korean War
  • He joined the BBC in 1957 and was a reporter for the Tonight programme
  • He was probably best known for Whicker's World, his long-running documentary programme which he presented from 1959 to 1990
  • Whicker was awarded a CBE in the 2005 New Year Honours list for services to broadcasting

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Whicker's partner: I was lucky to have shared his life

Alan Whicker's partner, Valerie Kleeman, said, "He had a wonderful life and I was lucky to have shared it with him".

Ms Kleeman continued: "A few years ago a poll asked who was the most envied man in the country - and Alan won by a country mile!

Alan Whicker with his partner Valerie Kleeman in 2005, when he received his CBE. Credit: Kirsty Wigglesworth/PA Archive/Press Association Images

"He said that he didn't know where work ended and private life began. Quoting Noel Coward, he would say 'work is more fun than fun'.

"On this last journey he will arrive curious, fascinated, and ready for a new adventure".

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Michael Palin heralds 'great character' Alan Whicker

Michael Palin has described Alan Whicker as "a great character, a great traveller and an excellent reporter".

Alan Whicker presenting an award to Michael Palin at the National TV Awards in 1998. Credit: Ben Curtis/PA Wire

Palin, who has taken up the mantle of travel documentary filmmaker from Whicker, added, "He was absolutely at the top of his game in front of the camera”.

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