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George Vine wore his knowledge and experience lightly

George Vine spread good cheer in the office in Bonn, where I was lucky to enjoy his company towards the end of his Reuters career. You could learn a lot from his knowledge and years of professional experience but he wore it all lightly. He was, as other friends have written, a kind and thoughtful man. One solo New Year shift in the office was brightened up by the unexpected arrival of George, coming in on his day off, through snow and armed with a hip flask if memory serves, to share a chat and a laugh. Among a broad array of talents and interests, he could paint and draw (I have one of his cartoons) and had an affection for old-time music hall and droll monologues, such as Albert and the Lion, bits of which he would recite from memory with a deft Stanley Holloway touch. Thanks, George, mind how you go and ‘don’t dilly dally on the way’. ■