elebrated former Daily Mirror editor David Banks is to be remembered with a service of thanksgiving, following his death aged 74.
Banks – lauded as “one of popular journalism’s most beloved characters” – will be remembered with a service at Fleet Street’s St Bride’s Church on Thursday.
His death in February following a long illness prompted an outpouring of grief across the journalism industry, in which he was renowned and respected.
An obituary published by Press Gazette shortly after Banks’ death in February pays tribute to him as a figure who “lit up rooms” – newsrooms and “every room and every bar where he held court with his stories, jokes, mimicry and, quite simply, his laughter”.
It remembered him as “an archetypal gentle giant…always smiling, even under the pressure of a deadline”.
Banks began his journalistic career at the Warrington Guardian before transferring to London as headline-writer for the Mirror.
Working as assistant editor on The Sun, Banks rose to prominence when he was selected by Rupert Murdoch to travel to the America to learn how to computerise newspaper production prior to News International’s move from Fleet Street to Wapping in 1986.
He edited major titles on three continents – the Daily Mirror in the UK, the New York Daily News in the US and the Sydney Daily Telegraph in Australia.
In the late 1990s he branched out into broadcast journalism, hosting regular shows on LBC and Talk Radio.
He later took up the pen again as a columnist at the Press Gazette, then at the Journal in Newcastle, and finally on local news website Voice of the North.
Thursday’s service of thanksgiving follows a funeral held in Northumberland on March 7.
It will take place at St Bride’s Church – ‘the journalists’ church’ – at 11.30am.