Tributes paid to top TV news man

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TRIBUTES have been paid to an Arbroath man who was a former head of news at BBC Scotland and well known for his work locally with the Hospitalfield Trust, who has died at the age of 65.

Ken Cargill (pictured), who resided near Friockheim, died on Tuesday after being ill for some time.

Mr Cargill was born in Arbroath before attending Arbroath High School and then studying at Edinburgh University where he was the founding chairman of the Edinburgh University Student Publications Board.

After graduating in 1972, he became a researcher in television current affairs in Glasgow for the BBC before being promoted and holding many positions.

In 1983 he became editor of the day for Reporting Scotland and between 1994 and 1999 held the position of head of radio, TV news and current affairs at BBC Scotland until he left the corporation in 2002.

His expertise in current affairs meant he became a visiting professor at Strathclyde University and an honorary professor at Glasgow University.

And just recently in May, he was given an honorary fellowship by Abertay University after being a member of its court for more than eight years.

Closer to his hometown, Mr Cargill became the chairman of the Hospitalfield Trust in 2009 and had been credited with instilling a new vision and direction for the arts, culture and heritage charity based at Hospitalfield House.

And Carol Pope, vice-chair of the Hospitalfield Trust paid tribute to her former colleague.

She said: “On behalf of the Trust I would like to say how very sad we are at Ken’s passing. Our thoughts are with Ken’s wife and partner of 30 years, Una Gallacher, who has cherished him and looked after him so tenderly to the end. 

“Ken was a breath of fresh air to the Patrick Allan-Fraser of Hospitalfield Trust, recognising the need for change, development and wider access to an unparalleled resource in Angus.

“His love of the creative arts was well expressed in his role as chair which he pursued with great enthusiasm, dynamism and professionalism, facing and overcoming a series of challenges as they emerged and leading the Trust to a new level of activity.”

Mr Cargill’s funeral will take place at 12 noon at St Vigeans Church on Tuesday followed by a reception at Hospitalfield House at 1.30 p.m. to which all friends and family are invited to celebrate his life.

He has requested no flowers but donations to Hospitalfield Trust.