Richard Ingrams

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Richard Reid Ingrams (born 19 August 1937 in Chelsea, London[1][2]) is an English journalist, a co-founder and second editor of the British satirical magazine Private Eye, and now editor of The Oldie magazine.

Career[edit]

Ingrams's parents were Leonard St Clair Ingrams and Victoria née Reid, who had three other sons, including the banker and opera impresario Leonard Ingrams (1941–2005). Ingrams was educated at the independent preparatory school West Downs in Winchester, Hampshire, followed by Shrewsbury School, where he met Willie Rushton and edited the school magazine. Before attending Oxford, he did his National Service in the army ranks after failing his interview for officer training, something which was unusual for someone from his background at the time. At University College, Oxford, where he read Classics, he shared tutorials with Robin Butler, later Cabinet Secretary and sometimes referred to as a "pillar of the Establishment". More importantly, he met Paul Foot, another former Shrewsbury pupil not yet the left-wing radical he became, who was to be a lifelong friend, and whose biography Ingrams wrote after Foot's early death.

Along with several other Old Salopians, including Willie Rushton, Ingrams founded Private Eye in 1962, taking over the editorship from Christopher Booker in 1963. It was a classic case, he claimed on Desert Island Discs in 2008, of the "old boy network". Private Eye was part of the satire boom of the early 1960s, which included the television show That Was The Week That Was, for which Ingrams wrote, and The Establishment nightclub, run by Peter Cook. When Private Eye ran into financial problems Cook was able to gain a majority shareholding on the proceeds of his brief but financially successful venture.

Ingrams vacated the editor's chair at the Eye in 1986, with Ian Hislop taking over. In 1992 Ingrams created and still edits The Oldie, a now monthly humorous lifestyle and issues magazine mainly aimed at the older generation. He is still chairman of Private Eye, working there every Monday,[3] spending four days a week in London.[4]

He was a regular on the radio panel quiz The News Quiz for its first twenty years and contributed a column to The Observer for eighteen years.[3] In late 2005 he moved to The Independent, considering The Observer to have gone downhill, particularly as a consequence of its support for the Iraq war.[3] In his 27 August 2011 column, he announced that he had been sacked by the newly appointed editor of The Independent. Shortly after the death of Jimmy Savile, because several national newspapers were unwilling to publish, Ingrams' The Oldie was the first publication to break the story of Savile's history of child abuse.[5]

Private life[edit]

Ingrams married Mary Morgan on 24 November 1962; they had three children: a son, Fred (b. 14 February 1964), who is an artist; a second son, Arthur, who was disabled and died in childhood; and a daughter, Margaret (4 May 1965 – 12 May 2004), who was nicknamed Jubby. In 1990, she married David Lionel Ford (b. 1952), the younger son of Sir Edward William Spencer Ford, GCVO, KCB ERD (b. 1910) Assistant Private Secretary to HM King George VI and to HM Queen Elizabeth II (descended from the Earls of Shrewsbury), by his wife, Virginia (1918–95), the daughter of the 1st and last Baron Brand, CMG (1878-1963), by his wife Phyllis Langhorne, daughter of Chiswell Dabney Langhorne, of Mirador, Greenwood, Virginia, United States. Jubby Ford, a mother of three, died aged 39 of a heroin overdose in Brighton.[6]

By 1993 Ingrams had become involved with Deborah Bosley, a former head waitress at the Groucho Club and an author.

Ingrams played the organ for many years in his local Anglican church in Aldworth, Berkshire, each Sunday.[7] The Romney Marsh Historic Churches Trust was formed under the patronage of Ingrams and the then Archbishop of Canterbury, Robert Runcie. In 2011 he announced he had converted to Roman Catholicism.[8]

Ingrams currently lives in Berkshire with his wife Sara, who has two sons, and his youngest son Louis.

A biography, Richard Ingrams: Lord of the Gnomes (ISBN 0-434-77828-1) by Harry Thompson, was published in 1994.

Selected works[edit]

See also[edit]

References[edit]

External links[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
Christopher Booker
Editor of Private Eye
1963 - 1986
Succeeded by
Ian Hislop