Former Square Mile and Ludgate director David Simpson dies aged 65

David Simpson a former newspaper journalist and latterly PR executive, has died aged 65.

Simpson, who retired in 2004 after spending his last four years as a director of Square Mile Communications – which has since become part of Weber Shandwick – died of a heart attack on 7 August. His work in this time was focused on M&A work for large companies.

His public relations career spanned 15 years, starting with a role at Dewe Rogerson.

From there he went on to Ludgate Communications, serving as chief executive until becoming deputy chairman in 1997. He then moved to Square Mile in 2000.

Before moving into PR, he worked as a financial journalist from 1974 to 1988, holding positions at The Observer and The Guardian. Michael Smith, a close friend and colleague of Simpson’s at The Guardian, said he was "the essence of a vibrant newspaper community in the 1980s".

"He was especially adept at breaking major stories and always brought great intelligence and insight to his work," Smith said. The two worked together on several stories, including the Westland scandal of 1986. Smith said Simpson used the same skills in public relations as he did with his reporting, earning him the "respect of journalists everywhere".

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