Andreas Whittam Smith
Sir Andreas Whittam Smith
|First Church Estates Commissioner|
6 March 2002 – June 2017
|Succeeded by||Loretta Minghella|
|Born||13 June 1937|
Macclesfield, Cheshire, England
Sir Andreas Whittam Smith, CBE (born Macclesfield 13 June 1937) is an English financial journalist, who was one of the founders of The Independent newspaper which began publication in October 1986 with Whittam Smith as editor. He is a former president of the British Board of Film Classification.
Early life and education
Most of his career has been spent in the City in journalism, including as city editor of The Guardian and The Daily Telegraph, and as editor of the Investors Chronicle from 1970 to 1977, and Stock Exchange Gazette. With Matthew Symonds, he was a co-founder of The Independent newspaper and was its first editor from 1986 to 1993. He still contributes articles on a regular basis.
Whittam Smith was chairman of the Financial Ombudsman Service from 2001 to 2003. He is also a director of Independent News and Media (UK), Vice Chairman of Tunbridge Wells Equitable Friendly Society, and a vice-president of the National Council for One Parent Families. He was appointed president of the British Board of Film Classification in 1998, instigating liberalisation of film and video censorship, a post from which he resigned in 2002. He has been on the Board of Trustees of The Architecture Foundation.
Church of England
On 6 March 2002, Whittam Smith was appointed the First Church Estates Commissioner, a senior lay person in the Church of England. As such, he is Chairman of the Church Commissioners' Assets Committee (an investment portfolio of £7 billion), and a member of the Church Commissioners' Board of Governors, the General Synod of the Church of England, and the Archbishops' Council. It was announced in September 2016 that he would be stepping down as First Church Estates Commissioner in June 2017.
In 2012 Whittam Smith started the Democracy 2015 movement to attempt to reform how British democracy functions. The movement's stated aim was to achieve a House of Commons majority in 2015 and form a reformist government independent of parliamentary parties and composed of non-politicians volunteering to stand for a single term only. The movement stood a candidate, Adam Lotun, in the Corby by-election on 15 November 2012. He came 13th out of 14 candidates, with 35 votes.
In 2003, he was made a Commander of the Order of the British Empire. In the 2015 Queen's Birthday Honours List, he was made a Knight Bachelor "for public service, particularly to the Church of England", and therefore granted the title sir.
In July 2017, he was awarded the Canterbury Cross for Services to the Church of England by the Archbishop of Canterbury.
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- Why I am still an Anglican, Continuum, 2006, page 67
- Nicholas John Wilkinson (28 May 2009). Secrecy and the Media: The Official History of the United Kingdom's D-Notice System. Routledge. p. 1030. ISBN 978-1-134-05253-0. Retrieved 6 July 2017.
- "New British newspaper takes on 'Qualities' in quest for readers". The Post and Courier. 7 October 1986. Retrieved 9 October 2012.
- "Andreas Whittam Smith steps down as President of the BBFC". BBFC. 6 March 2002. Retrieved 9 October 2012.[permanent dead link]
- National Life Stories, 'Whittam Smith, Andreas (1 of 4) National Life Stories Collection: 'Oral History of the British Press', The British Library Board, 2007. Retrieved 10 October 2017.
- "Sir Andreas Whittam Smith to step down from Church Commissioners". Media Centre. Church of England. 29 September 2016. Retrieved 21 May 2017.
- Whittam Smith, Andreas (5 September 2012). "How you can bring our ailing democracy back to life". The Independent. Archived from the original on 1 November 2012.
- "By-elections: Labour takes Corby from Conservatives". BBC Online. 16 November 2012. Archived from the original on 16 November 2012.
- "Honorary Graduates 1966 to 1988". bath.ac.uk. University of Bath. Retrieved 9 October 2012.
- "Stones frontman becomes Sir Mick". BBC News. 12 December 2003. Retrieved 9 October 2012.
- "No. 61256". The London Gazette (Supplement). 13 June 2015. p. B2.
- "Archbishop of Canterbury's Awards ceremony held at Lambeth Palace". Archbishop of Canterbury. 13 June 2017. Retrieved 14 July 2017.
| Editor of The Independent
1986 - 1993
George Lascelles, 7th Earl of Harewood
| President of the British Board of Film Classification
1998 - 2002