Sydney Elliott
Sydney Robert Elliott was a British
United Kingdom
The United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern IrelandIn the United Kingdom and Dependencies, other languages have been officially recognised as legitimate autochthonous languages under the European Charter for Regional or Minority Languages...

 newspaper editor.

Born on Clydeside, Elliott became involved in the co-operative movement. In the late 1920s he moved to Manchester
Manchester is a city and metropolitan borough in Greater Manchester, England. According to the Office for National Statistics, the 2010 mid-year population estimate for Manchester was 498,800. Manchester lies within one of the UK's largest metropolitan areas, the metropolitan county of Greater...

 to become editor of the monthly co-operative journal The Millgate Monthly. In 1929, the Sunday newspaper Reynold's News
Reynold's News
Reynold's News was a Sunday newspaper in the United Kingdom.The paper was founded as Reynolds's Weekly Newspaper by George W. M. Reynolds in 1850, who became its first editor. By 1870, the paper was selling more than 350,000 copies per week...

 was bought by the Co-operative Press
Co-operative Press
The Co-operative Press is a British small co-operative society whose principal activity is the publication of The Co-operative News. The mission of the Society is "To be the best news service and forum in the co-operative, mutual and social...

, and Elliott was appointed as its editor. He worked on updating the appearance of the paper, and appointed well-known figures such as H. N. Brailsford
H. N. Brailsford
Henry Noel Brailsford was the most prolific British left-wing journalist of the first half of the 20th century.The son of a Methodist preacher, he was born in Yorkshire and educated in Scotland, at the High School of Dundee...

 and Hamilton Fyfe
Hamilton Fyfe
Henry Hamilton Fyfe was a British journalist and writer who served as editor of both the Daily Mirror and the Daily Herald.-Career:...

 as columnists. In 1937, he wrote a comprehensive account of the movement, England: Cradle of Co-operation, while he also launched the United Peace Alliance to campaign against Franco in the Spanish Civil War
Spanish Civil War
The Spanish Civil WarAlso known as The Crusade among Nationalists, the Fourth Carlist War among Carlists, and The Rebellion or Uprising among Republicans. was a major conflict fought in Spain from 17 July 1936 to 1 April 1939...

. This soon became the focus of unsuccessful attempts by communists and left-wing members of the Labour Party
Labour Party (UK)
The Labour Party is a centre-left democratic socialist party in the United Kingdom. It surpassed the Liberal Party in general elections during the early 1920s, forming minority governments under Ramsay MacDonald in 1924 and 1929-1931. The party was in a wartime coalition from 1940 to 1945, after...

 to create a popular front
Popular front
A popular front is a broad coalition of different political groupings, often made up of leftists and centrists. Being very broad, they can sometimes include centrist and liberal forces as well as socialist and communist groups...


In 1941 Elliott moved to London
London is the capital city of :England and the :United Kingdom, the largest metropolitan area in the United Kingdom, and the largest urban zone in the European Union by most measures. Located on the River Thames, London has been a major settlement for two millennia, its history going back to its...

 to work on the Evening Standard
Evening Standard
The Evening Standard, now styled the London Evening Standard, is a free local daily newspaper, published Monday–Friday in tabloid format in London. It is the dominant regional evening paper for London and the surrounding area, with coverage of national and international news and City of London...

, then showing sympathy with radical causes under its editor, Michael Foot
Michael Foot
Michael Mackintosh Foot, FRSL, PC was a British Labour Party politician, journalist and author, who was a Member of Parliament from 1945 to 1955 and from 1960 until 1992...

. He succeeded Foot as editor in 1943, but left in the run-up to the 1945 UK general election after owner Lord Beaverbrook began putting pressure on him to advocate a vote for the Conservative Party
Conservative Party (UK)
The Conservative Party, formally the Conservative and Unionist Party, is a centre-right political party in the United Kingdom that adheres to the philosophies of conservatism and British unionism. It is the largest political party in the UK, and is currently the largest single party in the House...

. He became Editorial Advisor at the Daily Mirror, where he masterminded its campaign to support the Labour Party
Labour Party (UK)
The Labour Party is a centre-left democratic socialist party in the United Kingdom. It surpassed the Liberal Party in general elections during the early 1920s, forming minority governments under Ramsay MacDonald in 1924 and 1929-1931. The party was in a wartime coalition from 1940 to 1945, after...

 at the 1945 election. He later moved to supervise the Mirrors newspaper and radio operations in Australia
Australia , officially the Commonwealth of Australia, is a country in the Southern Hemisphere comprising the mainland of the Australian continent, the island of Tasmania, and numerous smaller islands in the Indian and Pacific Oceans. It is the world's sixth-largest country by total area...

, but returned to become General Manager of the Daily Herald in 1952.

Elliott became editor of the Herald in November 1953. In 1957, the Trades Union Congress
Trades Union Congress
The Trades Union Congress is a national trade union centre, a federation of trade unions in the United Kingdom, representing the majority of trade unions...

 gave up editorial control of the paper to Odhams Press
Odhams Press
Odhams Press was a British publishing firm. Originally a newspaper group, founded in 1890, it took the name Odham's Press Ltd in 1920 when it merged with John Bull magazine. By 1937 it had founded the first colour weekly, Woman, for which it set up and operated a dedicated high-speed print works...

, and Elliott left the paper. He was then engaged by Tim Hewat
Tim Hewat
Timothy Edward Patterson Hewat was an Australian television producer and journalist. He has been described as the "maverick genius of Granada television's current affairs in its formative years" and "one of the true greats of the medium."Born in New Zealand, he was raised in Australia and educated...

 to research a brief for a television documentary
Television documentary
Documentary television is a genre of television programming that broadcasts documentaries.* Documentary television series, a television series which is made up of documentary episodes....

 strand on ITV
ITV is the major commercial public service TV network in the United Kingdom. Launched in 1955 under the auspices of the Independent Television Authority to provide competition to the BBC, it is also the oldest commercial network in the UK...

, to be based on social issues. This led to the Searchlight series, an important precursor of World in Action
World in Action
World in Action was a British investigative current affairs programme made by Granada Television from 1963 until 1998. Its campaigning journalism frequently had a major impact on events of the day. Its production teams often took audacious risks and gained a solid reputation for its often...

, on which Elliott worked as a researcher.
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