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Durham University

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Staff Profile

Prof Timothy Luckhurst, MA, FRSA

Principal of South College

Contact Prof Timothy Luckhurst


Tim is the founding Principal of South College. Prior to his appointment he was most recently founding Head of the Centre for Journalism at the University of Kent. He was also founder and director of KMTV, a local television station for Kent.

An award-winning journalist for BBC News and Current Affairs and former editor of The Scotsman newspaper, Tim began his career on BBC Radio 4’s Today programme and went on to work as a producer, reporter and editor in Washington DC, the Middle East and Europe. He covered the Romanian Revolution and the Gulf War for BBC News. He was also a member of the team that designed and launched BBC Radio 5 Live. Subsequently, he worked as Editor of News Programmes at BBC Scotland, tasking responsibility for the BBC’s Scottish news output on radio and television from newsrooms extending from Glasgow to Lerwick. He has written as a columnist for newspapers including The Guardian, Times and Independent, the Daily Mail, New Statesman, Spectator and Los Angeles Times. Prior to entering journalism, he was an adviser to the Right Honourable Donald Dewar MP when he was Shadow Secretary of State for Scotland, 1985-1988.

He is a noted newspaper historian and campaigner for press freedom. His research focuses on the depiction of dissent in British and American newspapers between 1936 and 1945.

Tim was educated at Peebles High School, a comprehensive school in the Scottish Borders. He studied History at Robinson College, University of Cambridge. While a student, he played bass guitar in Tony Tiger and the Frosties, a student band that entertained thousands at May Balls and College events. He is married, with three daughters and a son.


Authored book

  • Luckhurst, Tim, Cocking, Ben, Reeves, Ian & Bailey, Rob (2019). Assessing the Delivery of BBC Radio 5 Live's Public Service Commitments. Abramis Academic Publishing.
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2012). Responsibility without Power – Lord Justice Leveson’s constitutional dilemma. Abramis Academic Publishing.
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2001). This is Today – A Biography of the Today Programme. Aurum Press.

Chapter in book

  • Luckhurst, Tim (2015). Foreword. In Leveson's illiberal Legacy: Press Freedom Under Attack. Free Speech Network. 5-15.
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2014). Online and On Death Row - Historicising Newspapers in Crisis. In the Routledge Companion to British Media History. Conby, Martin & Steel, John. Routledge.
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2013). King and County – The Kent Messenger and the Abdication Crisis. In What is Local? The Rise, Fall and Possible rise Again of Local Journalism. Mair, John, Keeble, Richard Lance & Fowler, Neil. Abramis.
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2012). Missing the Target and spurning the Prize. In The Phone Hacking Scandal: Journalism on Trial. Keeble, Richard Lance & Mair, John. Abramis.
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2011). Dr Hack I presume? Liberal Journalism in the Multimedia Age. In Multimedia Age in Face the Future: Tools for the Modern Media Age. Mair, John & Keeble, Richard Lance. Abramis.

Journal Article

  • Luckhurst, Tim & Garcia, Laura (2018). A Place to Sleep at the Start. British Journalism Review 29(3).
  • Luckhurst, Tim & Phippen, Lesley (2017). George Orwell versus Vera Brittain: Obliteration Bombing and the Tolerance in Wartime of Dissent in Weekly Political Publications. George Orwell Studies 2(1).
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2017). Radio Times. British Journalism Review 28(1).
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2016). A Sovereign Editor: Arthur Mann's Yorkshire Post and its crusade against appeasement, 1938-1939. Ethical Space, the international journal of communication ethics 13(4).
  • Luckhurst, Tim & Phippen, Lesley (2016). The Playwright who dramatised his own war record: a reassessment of William Douglas Home's accounts of his refusal to fight for the liberation of Le Havre. Contemporary British History 30(3).
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2015). The Vapourings of Empty Young Men? Legacies of their hostility between 1916 and 1918 in British newspaper treatment of conscientious objectors during the German blitzkrieg and invasion scare of 1940. Journalism Studies 17(4).
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2014). An Unworkable Policy Which Encourages The Enemy to Fight to The Last Gasp: The depiction in British and American newspapers of the Allied policy of unconditional surrender for Germany, 1943-1945. Journalism Studies
  • Luckhurst, Tim & Phippen, Lesley (2014). Good Behaviour Can be Taught. British Journalism Review 25(1).
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2014). Television News with Brains. British Journalism Review 25(2).
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2013). Excellent but Gullible People - The Press and the People’s Convention. Journalism Studies 14(1).
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2013). King and County. British Journalism Review 24(3).
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2012). A sordid era, but the future’s bright. British Journalism Review 23(4).
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2012). It is thrown against me that I have a castle – a portrait of newspaper coverage of the Central Southwark by-election, February 1940. Journalism Studies 13(1).
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2011). Bias, Bunkum and Capital-itis. British Journalism Review 22(2).
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2010). The crisis in journalism. Ethical Space 7(1).
  • Luckhurst, Tim (2006). Sabotaging a Star. British Journalism Review 17(2).