Hugo Rifkind

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Hugo Rifkind
Born 1977 (age 37–38)
Edinburgh, Scotland
Education Loretto School, Musselburgh
George Watson's College, Edinburgh
Emmanuel College, Cambridge
Occupation Journalist
Family Malcolm Rifkind (father)
Edith Rifkind (mother)

Hugo Rifkind (born 1977) is a Scottish journalist who is a columnist for The Times and The Spectator.

Early life and education[edit]

Hugo Rifkind was born 1977 in Edinburgh, the son of Conservative Party politician, Malcolm and his wife Edith Rifkind.

Rifkind was educated at the independent Loretto School in Musselburgh, near Edinburgh,[1] the only Jew to learn there at the time.[2] He also attended George Watson's College in Edinburgh before reading philosophy at Emmanuel College, Cambridge.[3]

Journalism career[edit]

Rifkind started in journalism as an editorial assistant for the show business website, before becoming a freelance writer for The Times and the Evening Standard, and a columnist for the Glasgow Herald from 2002 to 2005. He joined The Times in 2005, taking over the gossip column ("People") from Andrew Pierce.

In The Times, Rifkind writes a weekly opinion column, a satirical diary ("My Week") in the style of a public figure in the news, and a television review column, all on Saturdays. He also writes a fortnightly column for The Spectator and a monthly column for GQ. Additionally, he has appeared on BBC Radio Scotland and BBC London and BBC Radio 4's satirical quiz show The News Quiz.[4] Throughout the general election of 2015, he presented Campaign Sidebar, a Saturday morning political review show on BBC Radio 4. His debut novel, Overexposure (ISBN 1841959421), a satirical farce set in the London media world, was published in 2007. A compendium of his columns, My Week: The Secret Diaries Of Almost Everyone, was published in 2013.

Rifkind was named Columnist of the Year in the 2011 Editorial Intelligence Comment Awards, and Media Commentator of the Year in the same awards in 2012. He was highly commended in the Best of Humour category at the Society of Editors' Press Awards in 2012.[5] He was Stonewall's Journalist of the Year in 2012, in recognition of his strong support for equal marriage. The same year, he was also named Best Grooming Journalist in the P&G Beauty Awards.

On 8 January 2011, Rifkind's full-page essay on Wikipedia, titled "The website that turned the world wiki", was published. This was based on a conversation with site co-founder Jimmy Wales and included the admission that, in 2010, he (Rifkind) had inserted fictitious information about Queen Victoria in the Wikipedia entry for 29 April (the date in 2011 of the then-planned wedding of Prince William and Catherine Middleton) and had successfully fooled at least two journalists who had used the material in published stories. Rifkind claimed also that, over the years, his own entry had been "humorously vandalised" by colleagues of his wife.[6]

In August 2014, Rifkind was one of 200 public figures who were signatories to a letter to The Guardian opposing Scottish independence in the run-up to September's referendum on that issue.[7]


  • Overexposure (2006)
  • My Week: The Secret Diaries of Almost Everyone (2013)


  1. ^ Rifkind, Hugo (9 December 2009). "Shared Opinion: Climate change has become a proxy subject for people who just want to sound off". The Spectator 311 (9459): 28. Retrieved 17 December 2009. 
  2. ^ Rifkind, Hugo (12 August 2014). "Suddenly it feels uncomfortable to be a Jew". The Times. Retrieved 26 August 2014. 
  3. ^ "Hugo Rifkind". Institute of Ideas. 2009. Retrieved 17 December 2009. 
  4. ^ "Hugo Rifkind's entry at the literary agency PFD". Archived from the original on 11 October 2007. Retrieved 20 June 2007. 
  5. ^ Comment Awards. "Previous Winners". Comment Awards. Retrieved 19 August 2012. 
  6. ^ Hugo Rifkind. "The website that turned the world wiki" (Review). The Times (London). Saturday, 8 January 2011. p. 4.
  7. ^ "Celebrities' open letter to Scotland – full text and list of signatories | Politics". 2014-08-07. Retrieved 2014-08-26. 

External links[edit]