READERS of the Guardian’s Bits and Bobs column will be saddened to learn of the death of its author Bob Harragan.

Bob passed away at Prince Philip Hospital, Llanelli, on Tuesday, January 26, after a short illness.

His death came just hours before the publication of his final column.

Bob was like a piece of the furniture, not just at the South Wales Guardian, but amongst the local media in west Wales, having previously worked at the Llanelli Star and the South Wales Evening Post.

He was an old-school hack in the finest and most admirable sense of the words.

Having retired from news journalism, Bob refused to lay down his pen and enjoyed a new-found freedom writing his weekly column.

His musings were often insightful, amusing and thought-provoking, and always worth reading.

His love of cricket and a childhood in London recovering from the Blitz were subjects to which he often returned, but always to shed new light on the key issues of the day – local, national and global.

Whether addressing politics, immigration or the role of the state, Bob was often able to cut to the heart of the issue in sideways fashion with a seemingly innocent anecdote about his grandmother’s cooking or Glamorgan’s opening bowlers of the 1980s.

Bob never shied away from telling it as he saw it, he played with a straight bat and was happy to stand tall in the crease no matter what delivery he faced.

He will be sadly missed.