STV’s former Westminster correspondent Harry Smith has died, his family have confirmed.
The 69-year-old journalist died suddenly on Friday morning.
His family tweeted: “It’s so hard to believe his energy and sense of fun are gone. Many of you will have known him for his strong opinions and humour on here. He’ll be greatly missed by family, friends and colleagues.”
Head of news and current affairs Steve Ladurantaye said: “Harry was a world-class professional who never forgot where he started.
“His reports were as charming as they were informative in a way that can only be achieved when you really know what you’re talking about.”
STV News anchor John MacKay also described Mr Smith as “a great character and seemingly unflappable on the many stories he covered for STV News”.
While, STV’s special correspondent Bernard Ponsonby said: “He was an old school hack in a new hi-tech world but managed to straddle the changing technology and journalistic mores to be a gold-plated survivor in an often brutal profession that can regard experience as a passport to the knackers’ yard.”
During his career, Harry also worked for the BBC and ITN, as well as a contributor to Channel 4 and Aljazeera.
He first joined STV News in 1987 before beginning a second spell in 2009 and retired a little more than a year ago.
Channel 4 News anchor Krishnan Guru-Murthy said: “I’m so sorry to hear this news. He will indeed be sorely missed.
“Was great to have him part of the C4N family in recent years after so long at ITN/STV.”
‘He provided viewers across Scotland with news and insight in his own unique and authoritative style.’Bobby Hain, managing director of broadcasting at STV
Bobby Hain, managing director of broadcasting at STV, said: “A trusted and familiar face on screen, he was part of the STV family for a large part of his career.
“He provided viewers across Scotland with news and insight in his own unique and authoritative style.
“His energy, enthusiasm and expertise will be very much missed. Our thoughts and condolences are with Harry’s family at this sad time.”
First Minister Nicola Sturgeon also paid tribute.
She wrote on Twitter: “This is terribly sad news. Harry was a stalwart of Scottish and UK political reporting, and always a gentleman.
“My thoughts and condolences are with his family, friends and former colleagues.”