AA Gill: Sunday Times critic dies after cancer diagnosis – BBC News

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Sunday Times restaurant critic AA Gill has died, aged 62, three weeks after disclosing he had cancer.

The columnist told the newspaper last month that he had been diagnosed with the “full English” of cancers.

Gill, who had been having chemotherapy, said that he did not “feel cheated” and had been “very lucky” in his life.

Sunday Times editor Martin Ivens told Gill had been “a giant among journalists” and the “heart and soul” of the paper he joined in 1993.

The final column by Gill, about coming to terms with his diagnosis, will be featured in tomorrow’s Sunday Times.

‘Dazzling and fearless’

In a statement sent to staff on Saturday, Mr Ivens told: “It is with profound sadness that I must tell you that our much-loved colleague Adrian Gill died this morning.

“Adrian was stoical about his illness, but the suddenness of his death has shocked us all.”

He added: “He was the heart and soul of the paper. His wit was incomparable, his writing was astonishing and fearless, his intelligence was matched by compassion.

“Adrian was a giant among journalists. He was also our friend. We will miss him.”

Writing about his illness in November, Gill had said he had “an embarrassment of cancer, the full English.

“There is barely a morsel of offal not included. I have a trucker’s gut-buster, gimpy, malevolent, meaty malignancy.”

Media caption“I was given a second chance”: Listen to AA Gill speaking on BBC Radio 4’s Desert Island Discs in 2006

Writers, broadcasters and journalists have paid tribute to the published writer, who was known for dictating his transcript over the telephone due to his dyslexia.

Jay Rayner, the broadcaster and novelist, tweeted that Gill had been a “controversialist” but also “a kind man and a brilliant writer”.

Sunday Times political editor Tim Shipman described Gill as “the writer who first induced me buy the Sunday Times”.

“The best of us for 30 years has died. Very sombre mood in the office, ” he added.

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Times Literary Supplement editor Stig Abell tweeted that Gill had been “the first journalist I learned to recognise strictly from his style”.

John Witherow, editor of the Sunday Times from 1994 to 2012, told Gill had been extraordinary and unique.

“In all the years I was editor of The Sunday Times, he never once created a boring sentence or a phrase that did not shine.”

Another former editor, Andrew Neil, added: “Hired AA for Sunday Times in 1993. He never forgot what he saw as huge favour. As one of finest novelists of our time, he was doing the favour.”

Former Daily Mirror editor and TV presenter Piers Morgan tweetedthat Gill had “trashed” him for 20 years, but always did so “with excellently eloquent savagery” as well as “an irritating kernel of truth”.


AA Gill in print

On Brexit – Wanting the country back is the constant mantra of all the outies … Of course I know what they mean. We all know what they mean. They mean back from Johnny Foreigner, back from the brink, back from the future, back-to-back, back to bosky hedges and dry stone walls and country lanes and church buzzers and warm brew and skittles and football rattles and cheery banter and clogs on cobbles. – Wanting the country back is the constant mantra of all the outies … Of course I know what they mean. We all know what they mean. They mean back from Johnny Foreigner, back from the brink, back from the future, back-to-back, back to bosky hedges and dry stone walls and country lanes and church buzzers and warm brew and skittles and football rattles and cheery banter and clogs on cobbles. On his missing friend – We hugged. I suppose I told I loved him. I hope I did. And that was the last of him. Nothing. Not a hint , not a tracing , not national courts record, a hospital , not a Salvation Army bed , not a bank account, a credit card , not a passport , not a headstone – We hugged. I suppose I told I loved him. I hope I did. And that was the last of him. Nothing. Not a hint , not a tracing , not national courts record, a hospital , not a Salvation Army bed , not a bank account, a credit card , not a passport , not a headstone On Cleethorpes – Cleethorpes’s strip of bacchanalian sin is a sorry and insipid little thing. It’s not Las Vegas, it’s not even lost property: a meagre high street that is, like most high streets in provincial townships, gasping for trade – Cleethorpes’s strip of bacchanalian sin is a sorry and insipid little thing. It’s not Las Vegas, it’s not even lost property: a meagre high street that is, like most high streets in provincial townships, gasping for trade On a broth – The broth is a carnal riot: dozens of birds and animal bits, building up a suit with a blousy savor of shimmering nature, so vital it could bunga bunga in a bowl – The broth is a carnal riot: dozens of birds and animal bits, building up a suit with a blousy savor of shimmering nature, so vital it could bunga bunga in a bowl On bread and butter infused with yeast – “Oh, ” said the Blonde, raising her eyebrows. “It savor very, very … crotchish. Very masculine.” “Really? Well I never.” “Never? ” “Well, never tell never.” Image caption India Knight is a Sunday days columnist Image caption Lionel Barber is editor of the Financial Times

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