The managing editor of the Oldham Evening Chronicle has returned to work after a year-long battle with cancer.

Dave Whaley has written an award-winning series of articles about his illness after being diagnosed with a malignant tumour on his vocal cords in April last year.

He was initially given the all-clear after undergoing radiotherapy last summer, but the cancer returned and Whaley was required to have surgery.

Dave Whaley in his office at the Chronicle

Dave Whaley in his office at the Chronicle

In what was his last article before returning to work full-time, Whaley said he was “continuing to astound the doctors with my recovery” after having his vocal cords removed.

He said: “On the last day of April, 2014, I heard the word “cancer”. On the last day of April, 2015, I plan to be sitting poolside in Tenerife, champagne in hand, toasting “life” alongside my wife and friends.

“All that has happened in those 12 months I have conveyed to paper and the response to the “Keep Smiling” articles has been uplifting and humbling.

“I know my self-determination and positive outlook have been at the core of my recovery. But that could well have waned had it not been for others on my side: a shout across a street or fairway, a “we read it every week”, the shake of a hand, a brief word. Cards and letters from people I don’t even know!”

Whaley added: “I look healthier, not so drawn in the face and with more colour.

“I still don’t have much of a voice — it’s more of a whisper that isn’t much use when there is any background noise — but improvement, we were told, will come in time and I have to be patient.”