Tim Luckhurst

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Tim Luckhurst
Professor Tim Luckhurst in 2007
Nationality British
Alma mater Robinson College, Cambridge
Occupation Journalist and academic
Spouse(s) Dorothy (née Williamson)

Timothy Colin Harvey Luckhurst is a British journalist and academic currently the Professor of Journalism at the University of Kent,[1] and the founding head of the university's Centre for Journalism.[2]

He is a former editor of The Scotsman,[3] and has worked as a journalist for the BBC. His academic research focuses on the history of journalism and particularly on the depiction of political dissent in British newspapers during the era of appeasement and the Second World War. He has also written about the work of war correspondents on the Western Front during the First World War

Early life and career[edit]

Luckhurst was educated at Peebles High School,[1] a comprehensive school in Scotland, and at Robinson College, Cambridge, where he read history (1980–1983). As a student at Cambridge he played bass guitar in Tony Tiger and the Frosties alongside Andy White.[4] the Northern Irish singer, songwriter and poet.

Between 1985 and 1988 he worked as Parliamentary Press Officer for Donald Dewar MP, then Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland, and for the Scottish Labour group of MPs at Westminster. He stood as the Labour candidate in the Roxburgh and Berwickshire constituency at the 1987 British general election.

Career in journalism and academia[edit]

During the late 1980s and 1990s, Luckhurst worked for the BBC. On Radio 4's Today programme he produced, edited and reported from the UK and abroad. Luckhurst covered the Romanian Revolution of 1989 and the First Gulf War. He was the BBC's Washington Producer during the first year of the Clinton presidency and reported on the Waco Siege for BBC Radio. Returning to the UK he became a senior member of the team that designed and launched BBC Radio 5 Live. From 1995 to 1997 he was Editor of News Programmes at BBC Scotland in which role he introduced bi-media working in BBC Scotland newsrooms and thoroughly revised the design and presentation of programmes including Good Morning Scotland, Newsdrive and Reporting Scotland. During his time at the BBC, Luckhurst won two Sony Radio Academy Awards for news broadcasting (The Romanian Revolution 1989 for Radio 4's Today programme and the IRA ceasefire of 1995 for Radio Five Live). Later he reported on the liberation of Kosovo and the fall of Slobodan Milošević for The Scotsman.

He has published academic essays in Contemporary British History, Journalism Studies, and Ethical Space: The International Journal of Communication Ethics. His publications in peer-reviewed academic journals include War Correspondents''[5] in 1914-1918 Online The International Encyclopedia of the First world War; "The playwright who dramatised his own war record: a reassessment of William Douglas-Home’s accounts of his refusal to fight for the liberation of Le Havre" [6] in Contemporary British History Vol. 30 No 3. "The Vapourings of Empty Young Men?", Legacies of their hostility between 1916 and 1918 in British newspaper treatment of conscientious objectors during the German blitzkrieg and invasion scare of 1940"[7] in Journalism Studies,Vol.17 No 4 "An unworkable Policy Which Encourages the Enemy to Fight to the Last Gasp: The depiction in British and American newspapers of the Allied policy of unconditional surrender for Germany, 1943-1945 [8] In Journalism Studies Vol.16 No 6; Excellent but Gullible People – The Press and the People's Convention, January 1941[9] in Journalism Studies, Vol. 14 No 1 and It is held against me that I have a castle – a portrait of newspaper coverage of the Central Southwark by-election, February 1940,[10] in Journalism Studies Vol. 13 No 1

He is the author of books and chapters including Responsibility without Power: Lord Justice Leveson's Constitutional Dilemma.,[11] This is Today – A Biography of the Today Programme'', London, Aurum Press 2001, contributions to What a State – Is Devolution for Scotland the End of Britain.[12] and the essays, ''Compromising the First draft?,'' in Afghanistan, War and the Media: Deadlines and Frontlines, Edited by Richard Lance Keeble and John Mair, Bury St, Edmunds: Abramis, 2010; Dr Hack I presume? Liberal Journalism in the Multimedia Age in Face the Future: Tools for the Modern Media Age, Edited by John Mair and Richard Lance Keeble, Bury St. Edmunds, Abramis, 2011 and King and County: The Kent Messenger and the Abdication of Edward VIII in What do We Mean by Local? The Rise, Fall and Possible Rise Again of Local Newspapers, Edited by John Mair and Richard Lance Keeble [13]

In October 2000 he criticised collective amnesia in Serbia in a New Statesman essay entitled What did your dad do for Milošević?.[14] In 2001 he expressed trenchant criticism of the devolution settlement in Scotland in another essay for the New Statesman entitled "Scotland returns to the Dark Ages'".[15] He contributed a chapter, Missing the Target and Spurning the Prize to the book, The Phone Hacking Scandal: Journalism on Trial (Arima Publishing, 2012) This chapter formed the basis of his submission to the Leveson Inquiry.[16] In March 2014 he co-authored an essay, "Good Behaviour Can be Taught" in British Journalism Review[17] in which he argued that ethical training, not state sanctioned regulation, is the most appropriate way to promote quality journalism in a democratic society.

In January 2010 he provoked anger among media studies academics in a column for The Independent, "Demise of news barons is just a Marxist fantasy".[18] In March 2010 he defended self-regulation of the British press in a column, "Watchdog can champion ethics and fight sleaze", also published in The Independent.[19] Following the appointment of the Leveson Inquiry into the culture, practices and ethics of the British Press[20] he emerged as the leading academic critic of state involvement in the regulation of British newspapers. He set out his arguments for self-regulation unhindered by any involvement by parliament or government in a short book, He also submitted detailed written evidence to the Leveson Inquiry which was circulated to all core participants. In 2015 he wrote the foreword to Leveson's Illiberal Legacy[21] a detailed critique of the consequences of Lord Justice Leveson's proposals published by the Free Speech Network [22] His arguments were summarised in a newspaper article for the Daily Telegraph, "Britain's Press Must Remain Free".[23] He is an advocate of convergent, multimedia journalism.[24]

He has also written about motorcycling for The Independent's motoring section and about politics and media for the main newspaper,[25] and for Independent on Sunday. Among other publications he has written for are The Guardian[26] the New Statesman, The New Republic, The Spectator, the British Journalism Review, The Times and The Globe and Mail. Between 2000 and 2007 he was a political columnist for the Scottish Daily Mail. He is a frequent contributor to programmes on LBC Radio, Talksport and BBC Radio. He is a member of the Society of Editors and the National Union of Journalists.

Personal life[edit]

Luckhurst is married to Dorothy (née Williamson); the couple have four children.


  1. ^ a b "Staff: Profiles: Tim Luckhurst". www.kent.ac.uk. University of Kent. Retrieved 3 October 2016. 
  2. ^ Centre for Journalism homepage
  3. ^ "The Birth of a Tenpenny Thunderclap", The Scotsman Digital Archive
  4. ^ "Tony Tiger and the Frosties" – Google Search
  5. ^ http://encyclopedia.1914-1918-online.net/article/war_correspondents
  6. ^ http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/13619462.2016.1144512
  7. ^ http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/1461670X.2015.1071196
  8. ^ http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.1080/1461670X.2015.1071196
  9. ^ http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/1461670X.2012.680810 ,
  10. ^ http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/abs/10.1080/1461670X.2011.571830
  11. ^ http://www.abramis.co.uk/books/bookdetails.php?id=184549558
  12. ^ Alan Taylor (ed.) What a State! Is Devolution for Scotland the End of Britain? London: HarperCollins, 2000
  13. ^ http://www.abramis.co.uk/books/bookdetails.php?id=184549593
  14. ^ New Statesman – What did your dad do for Milosevic?
  15. ^ New Statesman – The New Statesman Essay – Scotland returns to the Dark Ages
  16. ^ Tim Luckhurst "Missing the Target and Spurning the Prize", Leveson Inquiry, February 2012
  17. ^ http://www.bjr.org.uk/data/2014/no1_luckhurst_phippen
  18. ^ Tim Luckhurst: Demise of news barons is just a Marxist fantasy – Opinion – Media – The Independent
  19. ^ Tim Luckhurst: Watchdog can champion ethics and fight sleaze – Opinion – Media – The Independent
  20. ^ http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20140122145147/http:/www.levesoninquiry.org.uk/
  21. ^ http://www.89up.org/leveson
  22. ^ http://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20140122145147/http:/www.levesoninquiry.org.uk/wp-content/uploads/2012/02/Submission-by-Professor-Tim-Luckhurst.pdf
  23. ^ http://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/uknews/leveson-inquiry/9630793/Britains-press-must-remain-free.html
  24. ^ Tim Luckhurst: We can't let Google steal the show | Comment is free | guardian.co.uk
  25. ^ The Independent | Search
  26. ^ Tim Luckhurst, The Guardian contributor page

External links[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
Alan Ruddock
Editor of The Scotsman
Succeeded by
Rebecca Hardy