A former Argus reporter and producer of the BBC’s Nationwide programme David Hanington has died aged 86.

David was born on the Caribbean island of Tobago in 1937 before shipping off to boarding school in the UK aged six.

He quickly learned to fend for himself and developed a passion for reading, writing and cricket, all of which would stay with him for life.

The Argus: A person reads The Argus unaware her friends are being interviewed by Argus reporter David Hanington.A person reads The Argus unaware her friends are being interviewed by Argus reporter David Hanington. (Image: Submitted)

David secured his first job as a journalist in the early 1960s, joining The Argus and working alongside a team of talented reporters including Annie Nightingale, who would become Radio 1’s first female DJ, and acclaimed theatre critic Jack Tinker.

“Dad had so many great stories about his time working at The Argus, about going out in the town and seeking out stories,” said Euan, David’s second eldest son.

“He said it was full of characters, but the story he would talk about most was club owner Harvey Holford who went on to kill his wife.”

The Argus: David (right) was best man to Gordon Thomas when he married Annie NightingaleDavid (right) was best man to Gordon Thomas when he married Annie Nightingale (Image: Submitted)

David then moved to London and joined The Daily Express. He covered the 1966 World Cup Final before joining  BBC’s Nationwide television show.

On divorcing his wife Viv in the mid 70s, David moved to Canada where he continued to work as a producer, before returning to Nationwide in the UK in the late 70s.

He covered many interesting stories meeting hundreds of fascinating people, but his most famous piece was documenting Herbie the Skateboarding duck, who went on to win the nation’s hearts.

The Argus: David played for The Argus football teamDavid played for The Argus football team (Image: Submitted)

David was a popular man around BBC Television Studios and Euan fondly remembers mingling with the stars, including Doctor Who actor Tom Baker and children’s presenter Noel Edmunds.

He met second wife Caroline at the BBC. The pair moved to Hampshire before settling in Norwich so David could join the Look East show.

David retired in 1995 and spent time travelling with Caroline, frequently visiting Tobago, and going to Norwich City matches - but he always kept a close eye on his beloved Brighton and Hove Albion.

The Argus: David and first wife Viv with Michael Palin at the launch of Peter's second book.David and first wife Viv with Michael Palin at the launch of Peter's second book. (Image: Submitted)

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He was incredibly proud of his first son Peter who published his first book A Dying Breed in 2016. In fact the book’s main character is based on David, who would say that today’s producers spend all their time in the office and don’t know how to make proper television shows.

But David was proud of all his children - Peter, Euan, Mark and Nick - and was besotted with his five grandchildren Jack, Martha, Nora, Maggie and Joelle.

David’s family was by his side when he died on November 24. In fact, Euan read aloud a poem that David had penned as he slipped away.

The Argus: Mark, David, Peter, Euan and Nick at a Norwich game.Mark, David, Peter, Euan and Nick at a Norwich game. (Image: Submitted)

The poem is about Brighton and Hove Albion’s Goldstone ground. It reads as follows:

I wish there was a Goldstone in the sky,

Where us old team mates could be young once more.

Not just a replay of the games gone by,

But live the legend, like we do before.

The shouts that echoed off that stadium roof,

Ranting at refs and players. Living proof that we and they all shared the same ambition.

For goals and glory. Instead came demolition.

Wrecking our glorious Goldstone.

Who knows why?


I bet you’ll reach that Goldstone in the sky,

You who were such a funny, faithful friend.

Cutting, sometimes, but caring.

Wise but wry.

So generous. Courageous to the end.

The writers you inspired, the jokes you made.

(Lethal one-liners were your stock-in-trade).

Jazz, music hall (Ooh Missus!) what a mix.

For versatility, old mate, you took the bix.

You’ll slay ‘em, roguish twinkle in your eye,

Playing the crowd at Goldstone in the sky.


Someday, we’ll meet at Goldstone in the sky,

(Our team might have a proper ground by then).

Falmer won’t match the low farce or high,

Dramas we witnessed, and may do again.

Yea, lad, we’ll miss thee. Never shall we see,

One with your smile, your style, your pedigree.

Enough of that, now. Raise them tankards.

And drink to that great Goldstone in the sky.


Montserrat. February 2009.