Isabel Hardman

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Isabel Hardman
Isabel Hardman (15155890870).jpg
Chairing a Policy Exchange debate
September 2014
Born (1986-05-05) 5 May 1986 (age 33)
Camden, London, England
Known forAssistant editor, The Spectator

Isabel Hardman (born 5 May 1986)[1] is a political journalist and the assistant editor of The Spectator. In 2015, she was named Journalist of the Year at the Political Studies Association's annual awards.

Early life[edit]

Isabel Hardman is the daughter of Michael Hardman, the first chairman and one of the four founders of the Campaign for Real Ale.[2] She attended St Catherine's School, Bramley, and Godalming College, before graduating from the University of Exeter with a first class degree in English Literature in 2007.[3][4] While at university, Hardman worked as a freelance journalist for The Observer.[5] She completed a National Council for the Training of Journalists course at Highbury College in 2009.[4]


Hardman began her career in journalism as a senior reporter for Inside Housing magazine. She then became assistant news editor at PoliticsHome. In September 2014, GQ magazine named her as one of their 100 most connected women in Britain,[3] and in December 2015, she was named "Journalist of the Year" at the Political Studies Association's annual awards.[6] She is currently the assistant editor of The Spectator,[7] and writes a weekly column for The Daily Telegraph.[8]

She appears on television programmes such as Question Time, This Week,[9] The Andrew Marr Show and Have I Got News for You,[10] and is a presenter of the BBC Radio 4 programme Week in Westminster.[3]

She hosts The Spectator Podcast.

Personal life[edit]

In April 2016, Hardman tweeted that a male member of Parliament had referred to her as "the totty" and that she had reported him to the whips. She was not intending to name the man[11] who was subsequently reported to be the Conservative MP Bob Stewart.[12]

In July 2016, Hardman missed a terrorist attack in the French city of Nice by five minutes. In an interview, she said that she had been walking back after watching a seaside fireworks display when the attack on the Promenade des Anglais occurred: "Suddenly there was sort of shouts and people started running away from the main square and there was screaming and then suddenly lots of sirens started up and there were police cars and ambulances whizzing past".[13]

Hardman has written about suffering from depression, and in October 2016 wrote that she had stopped working temporarily due to anxiety and depression.[14] She was off work for two months.[15]

Hardman is currently in a relationship with John Woodcock, the Member of Parliament for Barrow and Furness,[16][17] who currently sits as an independent MP, having resigned from the Labour Party amid an investigation into claims of sexual harassment.[18]


  • Hardman, Isabel (2018), Why We Get the Wrong Politicians, Atlantic Books, London, UK ISBN 978-1782399735


  1. ^ Hardman, Isabel (5 May 2017). "People who don't make a massive deal of their birthdays -even random ones like a 31st, for instance - are in my view quite odd". Twitter.
  2. ^ Hardman, Isabel (31 December 2015). "The honours system is entrenching elitism in British society by rewarding political work". The Independent. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  3. ^ a b c "GQ and Editorial Intelligence's 100 Most Connected Women 2014". GQ.
  4. ^ a b "Isabel Hardman". National Council for the Training of Journalists.
  5. ^ Hardman, Isabel (17 September 2006). "Are students getting value for their £9,000 ?". The Observer. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  6. ^ Nelson, Fraser (1 December 2015). "The Spectator's Isabel Hardman named Journalist of the Year". The Spectator. Retrieved 3 December 2015.
  7. ^ "Isabel Hardman". Spectator Blogs.
  8. ^ "Isabel Hardman". The Daily Telegraph.
  9. ^ "Westminster political week round up with Isabel Hardman". BBC News. 13 December 2013. Retrieved 26 April 2016.
  10. ^ HaveIGotNewsForYou [@haveigotnews] (13 October 2017). "Tonight @RichardAyoade hosts #HIGNFY, with guest panellists @IsabelHardman and Andy Hamilton. @BBCOne, 9pm" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  11. ^ MP apologises for calling female political journalist 'totty'. The Daily Telegraph, 13 April 2016. Retrieved 15 April 2016.
  12. ^ Allegretti, Aubrey (14 April 2016). "Bob Stewart MP Dismisses Row Over 'Totty' Slur As 'Political Correctness'". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 15 April 2016.
  13. ^ "08:03". The Guardian. 15 July 2016.
  14. ^ Hardman, Isabel. "How we do (and don't but should) treat depression". Medium. Retrieved 31 October 2016.
  15. ^ Isabel Hardman: When my mind stopped working, I realised just how badly we treat mental health. Isabel Hardman, The Telegraph, 9 January 2017. Retrieved 10 January 2017.
  16. ^ Isabel Hardman,[1], 'Medium', 30 March 2018
  17. ^ Dickson, Annabelle (13 September 2017). "Westminster's power couples". POLITICO. Retrieved 30 March 2018.
  18. ^ John Woodcock MP suspended over sexual harassment claims, BBC News, 13 April 2018

External links[edit]