The husband of Dianne Oxberry, the BBC presenter who died suddenly earlier this month, has revealed that his wife died of ovarian cancer.
And Ian Hindle, a cameraman, has now launched a crowdfunding campaign to set up a charity in his wife’s name.
The BBC announced earlier this month that Oxberry, North West Tonight’s much-loved weather presenter, had died suddenly at the age of 51. She lived in Sale with her Ian and her two young children.
He hopes the charity will help people suffering from “this appalling disease”.
He wrote: “Dianne died in early January after a very short battle with ovarian cancer. The tragic impact was felt not only by her family and friends, but also by the wider public whose lives she touched across more than 20 years’ TV and radio presenting.
“The money raised will be used to help families and individuals who have, or are suffering from, this aggressive disease. The aim is also to raise awareness about ovarian cancer and its after-effects, particularly where families have suffered sudden loss…which can often be the case with this appalling disease.”
Having worked on North West Tonight since 1994, Dianne was one of the most familiar faces on regional television, and also fronted regional current affairs programme Inside Out North West.
A BBC spokesperson said the news had come as a “huge shock to everyone at the BBC in the North West”.
Roger Johnson, North West Tonight presenter, led the tributes to Dianne from her colleagues at the BBC.
“We are heartbroken by Dianne’s death,” he said. “It is almost impossible to comprehend. Dianne was North West Tonight. It’s hard to imagine the programme without her.
“Our thoughts are with Ian and all of Dianne’s family. We hope they will find some comfort in the knowledge so many people loved Dianne and will miss her terribly.”
Dianne filing a live report from Market House in Altrincham in 2015:
— Altrincham Today (@altrinchamtoday) October 16, 2015
Born in Sunderland in 1967, Dianne worked at BBC Radio 1 alongside Steve Wright and Simon Mayo before moving north to present Saturday morning children’s TV show The 8:15 From Manchester.
She joined BBC North West Tonight after studying at the Met Office College and has also presented a number of programmes on BBC Radio Manchester including the Breakfast Show.
Helen Thomas, Director of BBC England, said: “She was a brilliant weather presenter, showed she could do serious journalism with Inside Out and could do the lighter end of broadcasting brilliantly whenever it was needed.
“Above all she was a lovely woman whose sudden and shocking death has robbed the BBC of one of our brightest stars. I’m thinking of all her family and friends at this awful time.”