TRIBUTE has been paid to a journalist who grew up on a Herefordshire farm, after his death aged 94.

Ken Watkins grew up on a farm in Ivington, near Leominster, and went on to become a journalist working for local and national newspapers.

His work in the media took him to papers far and wide, from Herefordshire to New York. At the time of his death on February 16 he was living in Beckenham, London.

He is survived by his wife Jenni and his daughter Janet.

His stepdaughter Lucy Donovan, paying tribute, said: "Publishing his obituary would have meant so much to Ken, as he loved working in newspapers. He was a journalist and sub-editor."

Hereford Times: Ken Watkins grew up on a farm and worked as a journalistKen Watkins grew up on a farm and worked as a journalist (Image: Lucy Donovan)

Born in Herefordshire, Mr Watkins' early jobs included farming, attending a petrol station and serving in the army.

He started his journalistic career with the Leominster News before joining the Grimsby Evening Telegraph. After a spell with the Western Daily Press and the Western Morning News, both based in the south west of England, he moved to London to work for the Guardian and the Financial Times, and then went onto live in New York. On returning to Britain, he ran his own freelance news service in Lewisham, south London, for 10 years, and later worked for the Times.


During his newspaper career, he interviewed many celebrities and leaders.

In 1994, Mr Watkins, then a pensioner, launched the Catford and Hither Green Newsreel in south London, but sold the newspaper in 2002 when he became ill.

His memoirs, The Boy from Ivington Village, were published in 2023 and tell the story of his life and his memories from World War Two.