Ex Mirror and Express managing editor turned cruise ship columnist John Honeywell dies aged 69

John Honeywell, a former national newspaper group managing editor and popular cruise holiday columnist, has died of cancer aged 69.

Orginally from Lancashire, Honeywell started out in local news before moving on to a successful career in Fleet Street.

He joined Express Newspapers as night editor in 1976, later moving to the Today newspaper where he was made managing editor.

He rejoined the Express in 1993 as managing editor before moving to the same role at the Mirror in 1996 where he spent more than a decade.

In 2009 Honeywell left newspapers to pursue his passion for cruise holidays, becoming a cruise columnist, for which he was better known under his pseudonym Captain Greybeard.

He is quoted as having said: “A bad day at sea is better than a good day in the office.”

Honeywell became editor of World Cruising Magazine in 2014 and was named editor-at-large two years later. He also wrote for trade publications Cruise Trade News and Cruising Destinations.

Louise Robinson, World of Cruising’s editor, said: “John was a hugely influential and popular figure in our industry.

“He was a wonderfully entertaining and generous colleague who was always happy to share his unrivalled knowledge of the world he loved so much.”

Chris Pitchford, managing director of Real Response Media, publisher of World of Cruising magazine, said: “The Cruise industry and the world has lost a great man.”

Fellow cruise writer and former Today newspaper colleague Dave Monk said: “John and I may have trodden similar paths but, while I have tried to follow in his footsteps, I will never fill them.

“To me he was always the best cruise writer and always will be.”

Honeywell won the Contribution to Cruise Award at this year’s Cruise Media Awards (pictured top).

He leaves behind his wife Shelia and sons Nick and Russell.

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