Ferdinand Mount

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Sir William Robert Ferdinand Mount, 3rd Baronet (born 2 July 1939), usually known as Ferdinand Mount, is a British writer and novelist, columnist for The Sunday Times and commentator on politics, and Conservative Party politician. He was head of the policy unit in 10 Downing Street in 1982–83, during the time when Margaret Thatcher was Prime Minister,[1][2] and wrote the 1983 Tory general election manifesto. He is regarded as being on the One Nation or 'wet' wing of the party.

He was educated at Greenways School, Ashton Gifford House, in Wiltshire, then at Sunningdale School, Eton College and Christ Church, Oxford. In 1993 he succeeded his uncle as 3rd Baronet, but he does not use the title.

For eleven years (1991–2002) he was editor of the Times Literary Supplement.[3] He then became a regular contributor to Standpoint magazine. He wrote for The Sunday Times, and in 2005 joined The Daily Telegraph as a commentator.[3]

He has written novels, including a six-volume novel sequence called Chronicle of Modern Twilight, centring on a low-key character, Gus Cotton; the title alludes to the sequence A Chronicle of Ancient Sunlight by Henry Williamson, and another sequence entitled Tales of History and Imagination.

He lives in Islington. He inherited the Mount baronetcy from his uncle William in 1993. His son Harry Mount is also a journalist and his cousin Mary Cameron is the mother of Prime Minister of the United Kingdom David Cameron, leader of the Conservative Party.[1][4]

He is the Chairman at the Friends of the British Library.[5]


  • Very Like a Whale (1967), novel
  • The Theatre of Politics (1972),
  • The Man Who Rode Ampersand (1975), novel, (Chronicle of Modern Twilight – 1)
  • The Clique (1978), novel
  • The Subversive Family: An Alternative History of Love and Marriage (1982)
  • The Practice of Liberty (1986), novel
  • The Selkirk Strip (1987), novel, (Chronicle of Modern Twilight – 2)
  • Of Love and Asthma (1991), novel, (Chronicle of Modern Twilight – 3), Winner of the Hawthornden Prize 1992
  • Communism: A Times Literary Supplement Companion (1992), editor
  • The British Constitution Now: Recovery or Decline? (1992)
  • The Recovery of the Constitution (Sovereignty Lectures) (1992)
  • Umbrella: A Pacific Tale (1994), novel, (Tales of History and Imagination – 1)
  • The Liquidator (1995), novel, (Chronicle of Modern Twilight – 4)
  • Jem (and Sam): A Revenger's Tale (1999), novel, (Tales of History and Imagination – 2)
  • Fairness (2001), novel, (Chronicle of Modern Twilight – 5)
  • Mind the Gap: Class in Britain Now (2004)
  • Heads You Win (2004), novel, (Chronicle of Modern Twilight – 6)
  • Private Life 21st Century (2006)
  • The Condor's Head (2007), novel
  • Cold Cream: My Early Life and Other Mistakes (2009), memoir
  • Full Circle: How the Classical World Came Back to Us, Simon & Schuster, 2010. ISBN 978-1-84737-798-2
  • The New Few: Power and Inequality in Britain Now or A Very British Oligarchy (2012)


  1. ^ a b Moss, Stephen (19 November 2010). "Lord Young has found that soundbites sometimes bite back". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 December 2010. 
  2. ^ MacLeod, Alexander (1 December 1982). "Mrs. Thatcher sets up her own advisory team". The Christian Science Monitor. 
  3. ^ a b Tryhorn, Chris (1 March 2005). "Ferdinand Mount joins Telegraph". The Guardian. Retrieved 11 December 2010. 
  4. ^ Bell, Matthew (28 November 2010). "Still talking turkey". The Independent. Retrieved 11 December 2010. 
  5. ^ http://support.bl.uk/Files/9b02519c-1589-4064-b836-a21900e85641/Friends-Newsletter-Summer-81.pdf
Baronetage of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
William Mount
(of Wasing)
Succeeded by