Arnold Woods

The death of Evening Courier business editor Arnold Woods has left a huge gap in the newsroom, in the community and among his many friends in Halifax.

Known to most people as Arnie, he died in hospital aged 55, from injuries sustained in a cycle accident.

Arnie was born in London and worked on several newspapers including the Hunts Post in Huntingdon, the Evening Post in Reading, and the Lincolnshire Echo.

He was the industrial correspondent for the Lancashire Evening Post from 1978 to 1983 and for three years until 1986 he was the press officer for Westland Helicopters in Yeovil. He joined the Courier in May 1986.

A lifelong Labour Party member and trade unionist, Arnie had been chairman of the Halifax branch of the National Union of Journalists, as well as secretary and father of the Courier chapel.

There are few people he met or worked with who won’t have an "Arnie" story. He was a lone London voice in an office full of northerners and made his presence and his views known – usually at full volume.

Tributes have poured in from the local business community. But as Arnie was a man who made friends wherever, he will also be missed in the local real ale pubs where he enjoyed the odd "liquid lunch".

He had a sense of fun and a sense of humour but above all a huge heart. Always ready to help anyone out he was immensely generous with his time and his kindness – always first to buy you a drink or take off his jacket to help a damsel in distress.

He was devoted to his wife, former Evening Courier arts editor and deputy editor of the Brighouse Echo Margaret Woods, and his children, son Nick, a university student and daughter, Cathy, who is teaching in Japan.

Hannah Ridgeway

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