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Tabloid editors from last 45 years vie to be Yorkshire Ripper's pallbearers

By Leppy Pardalis

“The Yorkshire Ripper won us millions of readers and we’ll never see his like again,” sobbed retired red-top newspaper editor Bob Scum today.

“It’ll be an honour to help carry his coffin should I be chosen from among my friends and former colleagues.”

Peter Sutcliffe, who began his murderous rampage in 1975 and was caught in 1981, died aged 74 at University Hospital of North Durham following a series of health crises including a bout of coronavirus.

He murdered 13 women and tried to murder many more.

Bob Scum’s fellow veteran editor Geoff Turd recalled: “Early on in his serial killing career, Peter was only bludgeoning, hacking and slashing prostitutes to death, so we in the newspaper business gave no more of a damn than most other British people at the time.

“But then he also began targeting women who weren’t prostitutes - or ‘innocent’ women, as we always made sure to call them - and the story became an absolute goldmine.

“Once the Great British Public realised the Ripper was capable of slaughtering people they didn’t secretly believe deserved it, all Hell broke loose.

“There were marches to reclaim the streets, red paint thrown at cinema screens during showings of slasher films, you name it.”

Another retired red-top editor, Eddie Guttershite, said: “Any story we could shoehorn the Ripper into was guaranteed to add at least a quarter of a million readers.

“It was even better after he was caught because we handed out huge wedges of cash to everybody who had ever known him in exchange for their stories, no matter how boring those stories were or how much we had to make up.

“For the next four decades we were able to keep our thick, ghoulish readers titillated with stories about his luxurious life in assorted cushy jails and Britain’s most notorious hospital for the criminally insane.

“We gleefully relayed tales of his being allowed to take part in all kinds of enjoyable activities, such as eating, sleeping, going to the toilet, meeting Jimmy Savile, being slashed across the face with a broken coffee jar and being stabbed through the eyeballs with a biro.

“It had been repeatedly confirmed by successive Home Secretaries that he would never be released, but that didn’t stop us from writing ‘exclusive’ after ‘exclusive’ quoting non-existent jail insiders as saying he would soon be released to an unsuspecting retirement community somewhere in England, within easy walking distance of at least one DIY superstore.”

Bob Scum added: “Our only regret is that none of us ever managed to achieve our Holy Grail - a single story somehow involving Peter Sutcliffe, Myra Hindley, Princess Diana, Arthur Scargill, Michael Jackson, Mr Blobby and Freddie Starr.”