Nottingham Post editor Mel Cook has died at the age of 51, the newspaper has announced.
Cook, died after a “brave battle with cancer”, having edited the newspaper since May last year. Previously he had been editor of the Scunthorpe Telegraph for four years.
According to the paper, he was diagnosed with cancer last autumn but continued to work during his treatment.
The Post said Cook had overseen its move from its old offices at Castle Wharf into a new city centre base, City Gate, while transformations took place to improve the paper and its website.
Steve Hollingsworth, publisher of the Nottingham Post, said: "Mel was one of life’s good guys – funny, friendly, hard-working, compassionate and a great editor.
"Even through his fight with this most cruel of illnesses Mel remained positive and pragmatic.
"He was a true friend and will be missed by all who knew him.
"The thoughts of everyone at the Post are with Helen, Ellie, Luke and the rest of his family at this tragic time."
Through his 30-year career Cook had also worked at the Hull Daily Mail, the Derby Telegraph and the South Wales Echo.
Former Hull Daily Mail Editor John Meehan, who worked with Mel for 13 years in Hull and Scunthorpe paid tribute to Cook this afternoon.
He said: "Mel was a consummate professional and an enormously capable all-round journalist. He had great news sense and terrific production skills. He could spot a great story and knew how to project it to best effect.
"He also achieved the rare combination of commanding the respect of his colleagues and being universally popular.
"He made things tick at the Hull Daily Mail, then went on to be a big success as Editor of the Sunthorpe Telegraph.
"Mel's death in his prime is terribly, terribly sad. He had begun to make his mark at the Nottingham Post and would have had a huge impact there. His passing is a great loss to regional journalism, the Nottingham Post and the community it serves."
More former colleagues and acquaintances paid their respects to Cook on Twitter:
This can be a nasty business at times, but I never heard anyone say a bad word about Mel Cook. Much admired colleague bit.ly/10uXeA3
— Mike Lowe (@cotslifeeditor) April 2, 2013
So sad to hear Nottingham Post editor Mel Cook has died aged only 51. Met him last year, a truly good man thisisnottingham.co.uk/Mel-Cook-edito…
— Tony Bates (@babblingbates) April 2, 2013
Sad to hear the passing of Mel Cook, previously the deputy editor of Hull Daily Mail. Such a lovely guy. RIP.m.thisisnottingham.co.uk/story.html?aid…
— Sara Robinson (@sarajeany85) April 2, 2013
A very sad day as Mel Cook, editor of the Nottingham Post, dies after battle with cancer thisisnottingham.co.uk/Mel-Cook-edito…
— neil white (@everyfilmdteled) April 2, 2013
For those who didn't know him, Mel Cook was loyal, funny, eternally cheerful, a grade A practical joker, great dad and damn fine journalist.
— Simon O'Neill (@SimonO19) April 2, 2013