Stephen Jessel

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Stephen Jessel (born 1943) was for many years a British BBC correspondent,based between 1977 and 1995 in Paris, Beijing, Brussels, Washington DC and again Paris. He had previously worked, after leaving university, for The Times of London as a reporter and education correspondent. Before joining the BBC foreign staff he worked as reporter and again education correspondent.

Jessel, the son of one-time The Times defence correspondent Bobby Jessel, who died aged 37, and Penelope Blackwell (later Dame Penelope Jessel), attended the Dragon School in Oxford.[1] and Shrewsbury School in Shropshire where he won a scholarship. He specialised in the classics and won an Open Exhibition to Balliol College, Oxford. He spent four years at Balliol gaining a first in Mods and a Third in Greats where his inability to cope with the philosophy aspect proved catastrophic.

As a BBC correspondent he was a prolific contributor to From our Own Correspondent and at the time of his firing by someone called Cramer in 1995 claimed to have sent more material than anyone in the programmne's long and distinguished history. He remained with the BBC as a freelance after ceasing to be a staff correspondent and broadcast after the death of Princess Diana in Paris.[2]

He later worked for AFP as a translator and sub-editor, and taught at the now-defunct Journalists in Europe Fund as well as in Kosovo, Algeria, Albania, Georgia and Liberia. He worked extensively as an editor for the OECD.

He married in 1970 Jane Margaret Marshall with whom he had a daughter Miranda Ruth Jessel born December 14, 1981.

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