Phillip Cottrell

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Phillip Cottrell (5 June 1968 – 11 December 2011) was a British-born journalist. Phillip was born in Enfield, United Kingdom, but he grew up in Cheshunt, Hertfordshire, where he was a pupil at Cheshunt School. From 1986 to 1989, Phillip studied for a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Media Studies, at what was the Polytechnic of Central London, currently the University of Westminster.

Phillip worked as a broadcast radio journalist for BBC Scotland based in Glasgow,[1] having previously worked in London. In 2006, Phillip left the United Kingdom, and immigrated to New Zealand, where he took a position at Radio New Zealand. In 2011, he was a news bulletin editor.[2]

He was one of the founding members of a gay immigrant group, "Queers Gone Kiwi.".[3]

Phillip was assaulted in a street attack on Boulcott Street in central Wellington, New Zealand, on 10 December 2011, less than 15 minutes after leaving the Radio New Zealand studios, where he had finished an overnight shift.[1][4] He died from his injuries at Wellington Hospital on 11 December 2011, at the age of 43 without regaining consciousness.[1] Although Phillip suffered from a degenerative bone disorder, this did not contribute to his death.[5] Two teenagers were charged in connection with his murder.[6]

Phillip's funeral took place on 16 December 2011, in Wellington, New Zealand. On 21 January 2012, a memorial service was held for Phillip in Long Sutton, Lincolnshire, United Kingdom.

The two men charged with his murder went on trial in December 2012, and both pleaded not guilty.[7] A number of Radio New Zealand staff were due to give evidence.[8] In December 2012 Nicho Allan Waipuka was found guilty of manslaughter while Manuel Renera Robinson was acquitted [9] Only at sentencing did Waipuka's violent history and the fact that he had almost sentenced to an intensive supervision sentence for charges including assault and threatening to kill just 17 days prior to his assault on Phillip Cottrell come out.[10] Sue Hollow's (Phillip Cottrell's sister) made a victim impact statement [11]

Phillip Cottrell's family, Wellington Central Baptist Church, other local residents, churches & businesses, the Gay & Lesbian community and representatives of Wellington Maori Iwi joined to dedicate a memorial bench & garden in Boulcott Street near where Phillip was assaulted as a tribute and to clearly say that the entire community abhors what happened [12]


  1. ^ a b c "Journalist murdered in New Zealand street attack". BBC News. 11 December 2011. Retrieved 2012-01-08. 
  2. ^ "Cottrell a 'dear friend' and 'admired' colleague". TVNZ. 16 December 2011. Retrieved 2012-01-08. 
  3. ^ Stanford, Jacqui (12 December 2011). "A dark week". Retrieved 10 January 2012. 
  4. ^ "Tributes after 'senseless' death of former BBC Scotland journalist". The Scotsman. 11 December 2011. Retrieved 2012-01-08. 
  5. ^ Sharon Lundy, Matthew Theunissen and Paul Harper (12 December 2011). "Taxi driver discovered murdered journalist". The New Zealand Herald. Retrieved 10 January 2012. 
  6. ^ "Teens accused of journo's murder appear in court". APNZ. New Zealand Herald. 14 December 2011. Retrieved 2012-01-08. 
  7. ^ "Trial into journalist's murder commences". 3 News NZ. 3 December 2012. 
  8. ^ "Sister, Radio NZ staff to give evidence". 3 News NZ. 4 December 2012. 
  9. ^ "Trial jury verdict". Dominion Post. 17 December 2012. 
  10. ^ "Killer avoided jail for similar attack". 16 February 2013. 
  11. ^ "Sue Hollows victim impact statement". Dominion Post. 17 February 2013. 
  12. ^ "Remembering Phillip Cottrell". GayNZ website. 20 December 2012.