We are sorry to report that the Petersfield journalist Jon Walker has died.
Jon’s work for The Petersfield Post over decades has made him a familiar face in Petersfield. His journalism frequently has kept local politicians on their toes.
Jon died in the early hours of Sunday morning. He was diagnosed with terminal cancer just last month.
Jon’s wife Milla has asked Shine Radio to share the news. She and the family are asking for privacy at this time.
Joff Lacey gives a personal tribute to Jon Walker in the audio above. It’s an excerpt from the most recent edition of our programme the P pod in which Jon made more than one hundred appearances.
Jon and Joff would record their weekly conversation on a Sunday afternoon in The Townhouse, accompanied by just a small hand-held audio recorder and two Jamesons.
Today, in memory of Jon, Joff returned one last time.
Tributes to Jon are coming in already. We will broadcast some of them tomorrow morning (Monday) in the Rise and Shine programme with Vicki and Kieran Cheeseman between 6am and 10am.
Daniel Gee is head of content at Tindle Newspapers which owns The Petersfield Post. He said:
Speaking as a colleague and friend, I’m crushed by Jon’s passing and my heart aches for his boys and Milla. Jon was a phenomenal journalist, a real social warrior and a passionate advocate for his community. You couldn’t sneeze in Petersfield without this man knowing about it, and god help you if he thought you were up to no good… The outpouring of love for Jon since his illness became common knowledge is a testament to the man he was, and I know it meant a lot to him. Thanks for everything JW. We’ll carry on the good fight in your honour fella.Daniel Gee. Commenting on social media.
Local schools have added their voices to the tributes
We are all very sad to hear this news at TPS, Jon was always such a good friend to the school as both a parent and a journalist. Our thoughts are with his family and friends.The Petersfield School
The Ditcham Park School community is so sad to hear this news and our thoughts are with Jon’s family and colleagues.Ditcham Park School
Organiser of the Petersfield Walking Festival and recent recipient of a Mayor’s Award, Malinka Van Der Gaauw said:
The town has lost a true friend and good man, so very sad. Rest in peace Jon and may your family find solace in the legacy you leave behind x
Shine Radio’s co-founder Stephen Martin praised Jon’s approach to local reporting
Jon was everything you’d want in a local journalist. Visible and listening, always walking the patch with a nose for a story and principles. Jon expected accountability in public office and told the town when it wasn’t there. RIP.
Councillor Jamie Matthews who serves the area in which Jon lived said:
So very sad. He was a fine man, always in search of a story. I used to enjoy our chats putting everything to rights!
District councillor Keith Budden shared his tribute to Jon
Really sorry to hear of Jon’s passing. He worked hard for the people of Petersfield. RIP Jon. Thoughts and prayers with your family and friends at this sad time.
Councillor J C Crissey said
Deepest condolences and prayers to Milla and all of Jon’s family during this difficult time. Petersfield has lost one of its most authoritative voices today. RIP Jon.
“Barry O”, writing on social media sums up what many know of Jon
A proper legend, and as well as all the glowing loveliness, he was also, let’s not forget…. Thoroughly and wonderfully despicable! A beautiful human being.Barry O, writing on social media
Diana Grundy and Jon go back a long way
So sad after being at school with him and good friends for many years RIP Jon my thoughts are with your family and friends x x x
Jo Potter recalls stories of Jon from more than 30 years ago
I’m so sorry to hear that Jon has died. He was such a lovely man. Very helpful , funny and with a good heart. Loved hearing about his escapades in the poll tax riots!!
Mike Robinson, local volunteer and former leading light in Petersfield Round Table added
RIP Jon. A lovely man who we met through his volunteering as a scout leader. My children have many fond memories of him.
My thoughts are with his family.
Local aerial photographer Chris Gorman has dedicated a photograph to Jon Walker.
Jon…you became a much valued friend and colleague, you supported my work unbelievably and were a great friend over a pint or two. The image here shows St Hubert’s Church in Idsworth, the night sky rotating around the North Star which always stays totally stable as the earth rotates. A great symbol of Jon’s commitment to Petersfield. You’ll be sorely missed.
On behalf of Stroud Village Hall and Residents Association I would like to pass on our condolences to Jon’s family too . Jon was always a great supporter of what we did here and his giving us such great cover for things like the annual Revels will always be remembered . He will be missed by our community as by many others I am sure .