Top author, presenter and journalist Stuart Maconie will receive an honorary masters award from Edge Hill University this week.

The popular media star is an alumnus of the University, having studied on the Ormskirk campus in the early Eighties. His award recognises success in his professional life, his promotion of the north-west and championing the region’s talent.

Stuart will receive his honorary masters from University Chancellor Professor Tanya Byron at a ceremony on Saturday 5 December on the Ormskirk campus, alongside 300 Edge Hill health and postgraduate students.

Born in Whiston Hospital, Stuart grew up in Wigan where his parents still live. After graduation he worked at Skelmersdale College as an English and Sociology teacher, before pursuing his dream of a career as a music journalist. He has worked for titles including The Times, the Guardian, the Evening Standard and Elle magazine, and was also deputy editor of NME. He is currently a columnist for Radio Times, Cumbria Life and Country Walking and writes for WORD magazine and The Mirror.

Stuart has also written a number of books including Cider with Roadies, a memoir of his time as a music journalist, and Pies and Prejudice, a humorous look at modern life in the North of England. His latest book is Adventures on the High Teas: In Search of Middle England. He has also penned the official autobiographies of the bands Blur and James.

Away from writing, Stuart is co-presenter of the Radio 2 evening show, Radcliffe and Maconie, along with Mark Radcliffe. Both confirmed Northerners, they broadcast from Manchester’s BBC studios. Stuart also joined BBC 6 Music from its inception in 2002 where he presents Freak Zone, a diverse mix of the weird and the wonderful.

His TV appearances have included Never Mind the Buzzcocks, Peter Kay’s Phoenix Nights, and Stuart Maconie’s TV Towns, a popular gazeteer of major British cities. He has been described by The Times as ‘a national treasure’ and by comedian Peter Kay as ‘the best thing to come out of Wigan since the A58 to Bolton’.

Stuart now splits his time between Birmingham and Cumbria. As a keen walker, he says he is never happier than when walking his dog, Muffin, on the fells. This year he completed all 214 Wainwrights, the daunting series of hikes named after famed fell walker Alfred Wainwright, and became an honorary member of the Wainwright Society.