Born and brought up in Liverpool, Gillian Reynolds read English at Oxford and began her career as a radio reviewer on the Guardian. It continued at the Daily Telegraph, where she wrote for 42 unbroken years, sometimes a tough critic but always a doughty champion of the medium. In 1999 she was appointed MBE for services to broadcasting.
Last year she moved to the Sunday Times at the age of 82. After half a century as a professional listener, she said this was a strike against ageism – ‘proof that some employers value the benefits of long experience over the bouncy energy of youth’.