Jump to content

Jeffrey Archer

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

The Lord Archer of Weston-super-Mare
Archer in 2012
Member of the House of Lords
Lord Temporal
Assumed office
27 July 1992
Life peerage
Member of Parliament
for Louth (Lincolnshire)
In office
4 December 1969 – 20 September 1974
Preceded byCyril Osborne
Succeeded byMichael Brotherton
Personal details
Jeffrey Howard Archer

15 April 1940 (1940-04-15) (age 84)
London, England
Political partyNon-affiliated (since 2001)
Other political
Conservative (prior to 2001)
(m. 1966)
Residence(s)London, England
OccupationPolitician, author
Writing career
OccupationNovelist, short story writer, playwright
GenreThriller, drama

Jeffrey Howard Archer, Baron Archer of Weston-super-Mare (born 15 April 1940)[1] is an English novelist, life peer, convicted criminal, and former elected politician who remains a member of the House of Lords.[2] Before becoming an author, Archer was a Member of Parliament (1969–1974), but did not seek re-election after a financial scandal that left him almost bankrupt.[3]

Archer revived his fortunes as a novelist. His 1979 novel Kane and Abel remains one of the best-selling books in the world, with an estimated 34 million copies sold worldwide.[4][5] Overall his books have sold more than 320 million copies worldwide.[6]

Archer became deputy chairman of the Conservative Party (1985–86), before resigning after a newspaper accused him of paying money to a prostitute. In 1987, he won a court case and was awarded large damages because of this claim.[7] He was made a life peer in 1992 and subsequently became Conservative candidate to be the first elected Mayor of London. He resigned his candidacy in 1999 after it emerged that he had lied in his 1987 libel case. He was imprisoned (2001–2003) for perjury and perverting the course of justice, ending his active political career.[6]

Early life and education[edit]

Jeffrey Howard Archer was born in the City of London Maternity Hospital in Holloway, London on 15 April 1940.[8] He was two weeks old when his family moved to Somerset, eventually settling in the seaside town of Weston-super-Mare,[9] where Archer spent most of his early life.[10]

His father, William (died 1956),[11] was 64 years old when Jeffrey Archer was born. Early in his career, Archer gave conflicting accounts to the press of his father's supposed, but non-existent, military career.[10] William Archer was, in fact, a bigamist, fraudster, and conman, who impersonated another William Archer, a deceased war medal holder. He was at different times employed as a chewing gum salesman in New York and a mortgage broker in London. In the latter capacity, he was charged at the Old Bailey with a series of fraud offences. On being released on bail, he absconded to the US under the name William Grimwood.

In the US, William Archer fathered a child, Rosemary Turner (21 June 1917 – 11 October 1986), Jeffrey's half-sister. In 1940 Rosemary married lawyer Brien McMahon who went on to become the Democratic senator for Connecticut (1945–1952) and a contender for the Democratic presidential nomination in 1952. After Brien McMahon's death that year, Rosemary married, in 1953, the Belgian ambassador to Washington, Baron Silvercruys. The First Lady, Mamie Eisenhower, was the guest-of-honour at their wedding.[12][13][14]

As a boy Archer dreamed of being captain of the Bristol Rovers Football Club. He is still a fan of the club.[15]

Wellington School[edit]

In 1951, Archer won a scholarship to Wellington School in Somerset (not Wellington College in Berkshire, as he was later inclined to claim) after passing the 11-plus.[11] At this time his mother, Lola, was employed as a journalist on Weston's local newspaper, the Weston Mercury.[16] She wrote a weekly column entitled "Over the Teacups", and frequently wrote about Jeffrey, calling him 'Tuppence'.[17] Although Archer enjoyed the local fame this brought him, it caused him to be the victim of bullying while at Wellington School.[7]

Archer left school with O-levels in English literature, art, and history. He then spent a few years in a variety of jobs, including training with the army and a short period with the Metropolitan Police.[7] He later worked as a physical education teacher, first at Vicar's Hill, a preparatory school in Hampshire, and later at Dover College in Kent.[10]


In 1963 Archer was offered a place at the Oxford University Department for Continuing Education to study for a Diploma of Education. The course was based in the department, and Archer became a member of Brasenose College. There have been claims that Archer provided false evidence of his academic qualifications to Brasenose, the apparent citing of an American institution which was actually a bodybuilding club, for instance, in gaining admission to the course.[7][18] It has also been alleged Archer provided false statements about three non-existent A-Level passes and a U.S. university degree.[16] Although the diploma course only lasted a year, Archer spent a total of three years at Oxford.[7] At Oxford, Archer was successful in athletics, competing in sprinting and hurdling, and became president of the Oxford University Athletic Club in 1965/6. His opposite number at Cambridge University, Wendell Mottley became a lifelong friend. [19][7] Television coverage survives of him making false starts in a 1964 sprint race, but he was not disqualified. He gained a blue in athletics and went on to run for England, and once competed for Great Britain.[16] His time of 10.6 seconds for 100 metres is the joint second fastest time by an Oxford University student.[20]

Archer raised money for the charity Oxfam, obtaining the support of The Beatles in a fundraising drive. The band accepted his invitation to visit the Principal's lodge at Brasenose College, where they were photographed with Archer and dons of the college,[21] although they did not play there. The critic Sheridan Morley, then a student at Merton, was present and recalled the occasion:

At the interval I went to the toilet, and there beside me was Ringo Starr. He asked if I knew this Jeffrey Archer bloke. I said everyone in Oxford was trying to work out who he was. Ringo said: "He strikes me as a nice enough fella, but he's the kind of bloke who would bottle your piss and sell it."[8]

Early career[edit]

After leaving Oxford, Archer continued as a charity fundraiser, initially working for the National Birthday Trust,[22] a medical charity that promoted safe childbirth, before joining the United Nations Association (UNA) as its chief fundraiser. The then chairman of the UNA, Humphry Berkeley, alleged that there were numerous discrepancies in Archer's expense claims while he worked at the UNA.[8][23]

Around this time, Archer began a career in politics, serving as a Conservative councillor for Havering on the Greater London Council (1967–1970).[16]

Archer set up his own fundraising and public relations company, Arrow Enterprises, in 1969.[24] That same year he opened an art gallery, the Archer Gallery, in Mayfair. The gallery specialised in modern art, including pieces by the sculptor and painter Leon Underwood. The gallery ultimately lost money, however, and Archer sold it two years later.[25]

Member of Parliament[edit]

At 29, Archer was elected Member of Parliament (MP) for the Lincolnshire constituency of Louth, holding the seat for the Conservative Party in a by-election on 4 December 1969.[16] Archer beat Ian Gow to the selection after winning over a substantial proportion of younger members at the selection meeting. The national party had concerns about Archer's selection, specifically relating to the UNA expenses allegations made by Humphry Berkeley, himself a former Conservative MP. Berkeley tried to persuade the Conservative Central Office that Archer was unsuitable as a parliamentary candidate.[23] Archer brought a defamation action against Berkeley and the story was kept out of the press, although a truncated version of the story did appear in The Times.[7] The case was eventually settled out of court, with Archer agreeing to pay legal costs of around £30,000.[26]

Louth constituency had three key areas: Louth, Cleethorpes, and Immingham. During his time as an MP, Archer was a regular at the Immingham Conservative Club in the most working-class part of the constituency. In 1970 he took part in the Kennedy Memorial Test, a 50-mile running/walking race from Louth to Skegness and back.[27]

In parliament, Archer was on the left of the Conservative Party, rebelling against some of his party's policies. He advocated free TV licences for elderly people and was against museum entrance charges.[28] In 1971, he employed David Mellor to deal with his correspondence. He tipped Mellor to reach the cabinet. In an interview, in February 1999 Archer said, "I hope we don't return to extremes. I'm what you might call centre-right but I've always disliked the right wing as much as I've disliked the left wing."[29]

Financial crisis[edit]

In 1974, Archer was a casualty of a fraudulent investment scheme involving a Canadian company called Aquablast. The debacle lost him his first fortune and left him almost £500,000 in debt.[7] Fearing imminent bankruptcy, he stood down as an MP at the October 1974 general election.

While he was a witness in the Aquablast case in Toronto in 1975, Archer was accused of stealing three suits from a department store.[30] Archer denied the accusation for many years, but in the late 1990s he finally acknowledged that he had taken the suits, although he claimed that at the time he had not realised he had left the shop.[7] No charges were ever brought.

Writing career[edit]

Archer wrote his first book, Not a Penny More, Not a Penny Less, in the autumn of 1974, as a means of avoiding bankruptcy.[8] The book was picked up by the literary agent Deborah Owen and published first in the U.S., then eventually in Britain in the autumn of 1976. A radio adaptation was aired on BBC Radio 4 in the early 1980s and a BBC Television adaptation of the book was broadcast in 1990.[31]

Kane and Abel (1979) proved to be his best-selling work, reaching number one on The New York Times bestsellers list. Like most of his early work, it was edited by Richard Cohen, the Olympic fencing gold-medallist.[22] It was made into a television mini-series by CBS in 1985, starring Peter Strauss and Sam Neill. The following year, Granada TV screened a 10-part adaptation of another Archer bestseller, First Among Equals, which told the story of four men and their quest to become prime minister. In the U.S. edition of the novel, the character of Andrew Fraser was eliminated, reducing the number of protagonists to three.[32]

As well as novels and short stories, Archer has also written three stage plays. The first, Beyond Reasonable Doubt, opened in 1987 and ran at the Queen's Theatre in London's West End for over a year.[33] Archer's next play, Exclusive, opened at the Strand Theatre, London, in September 1989.[34] It was not well received by critics, and closed after a few weeks. His final play, The Accused, opened at the Theatre Royal, Windsor on 26 September 2000, before transferring to the Theatre Royal Haymarket in the West End in December.[35]

In 1988, author Kathleen Burnett accused Archer of plagiarizing a story she had written, and including it in his short-story collection, A Twist in the Tale. Archer denied he had plagiarized the story, claiming he had simply been inspired by the idea.[36]

While Archer's books are commercially successful, critics have been generally unfavorable towards his writing.[37] Journalist Hugo Barnacle, writing for The Independent about The Fourth Estate (1996), thought the novel, while demonstrating that "the editors don't seem to have done any work", was "not wholly unsatisfactory".[38]

Archer has said that he spends considerable time writing and re-writing each book. He goes abroad to write the first draft, working in blocks of two hours at a time, then writes anything up to 17 drafts in total.[39] Since 2010, Archer has written the first draft of each new book at his villa in Majorca, called "Writer's Block".[40]

In 2011, Archer published the first of seven books in The Clifton Chronicles series, which follow the life of Harry Clifton from his birth in 1920, through to his funeral in 1993. The first novel in the series, Only Time Will Tell, tells the story of Harry from 1920 through to 1940, and was published in the UK on 12 May 2011.[6] The seventh and final novel in the series, This Was a Man, was published on 3 November 2016.[41]

The Short, the Long and the Tall, an illustrated collection of Archer's short stories, was published in November 2020, with watercolor illustrations by artist Paul Cox.[42]

Over My Dead Body was published in October 2021, and is the fourth book in a series of thrillers featuring detective William Warwick.[43] The book was critically acclaimed and became a New York Times bestseller.

In January 2020 it was reported that Archer had sued his former literary agents, Curtis Brown, for £500,000 in unpaid royalties.[44]

Return to politics[edit]

Deputy party chairman[edit]

Archer's political career revived in the 1980s, and he became a popular speaker among the Conservative grassroots. He was appointed deputy chairman of the Conservative Party by Margaret Thatcher in September 1985. Norman Tebbit, party chairman, had misgivings over the appointment, as did other prominent members of the party, including William Whitelaw and Edward Heath.[16] During his tenure as deputy chairman, Archer was responsible for a number of embarrassing moments, including his statement, made during a live radio interview, that many young, unemployed people were simply unwilling to find work.[10] At the time of Archer's comment, unemployment in the UK stood at a record 3.4 million. Archer was later forced to apologise for the remark, saying that his words had been "taken out of context". Archer resigned as deputy chairman in October 1986 due to a scandal caused by an article in The News of the World, which led with the story, "Tory boss Archer pays vice-girl", and claimed Archer had paid Monica Coghlan, a prostitute, £2,000 through an intermediary at Victoria Station to go abroad.[7]

Daily Star libel case[edit]

Shortly after The News of the World story broke, rival tabloid the Daily Star ran a story alleging Archer had paid for sex with Coghlan, something The News of the World had been careful to avoid stating directly.[7] Archer responded by suing the Daily Star.[45] The case came to court in July 1987. Explaining the payment to Coghlan as the action of a philanthropist rather than that of a guilty man, Archer won the case and was awarded £500,000 damages.[46] Archer stated he would donate the money to charity.[47] However, this case would ultimately result in Archer's final exit from front-line politics some years later. The description the judge (Mr Justice Caulfield) gave of Mrs Archer in his jury instructions included: "Remember Mary Archer in the witness-box. Your vision of her probably will never disappear. Has she elegance? Has she fragrance? Would she have, without the strain of this trial, radiance? How would she appeal? Has she had a happy married life? Has she been able to enjoy, rather than endure, her husband Jeffrey?" The judge then went on to say of Jeffrey Archer: "Is he in need of cold, unloving, rubber-insulated sex in a seedy hotel round about quarter to one on a Tuesday morning after an evening at the Caprice?"[48]

Although the Archers claimed they were a normal, happily married couple, by this time, according to the journalist Adam Raphael, Jeffrey and Mary Archer were living largely separate lives. The editor of the Daily Star, Lloyd Turner, was sacked six weeks after the trial by the paper's owner Lord Stevens of Ludgate.[49] Adam Raphael soon afterwards found proof that Archer had perjured himself at the trial, but his superiors were unwilling to take the risk of a potentially costly libel case.[50] The News of the World later settled out-of-court with Archer, acknowledging they, too, had libelled him.[46]

Kurdish charity and peerage[edit]

When Saddam Hussein suppressed Kurdish uprisings in 1991, Archer, with the Red Cross, set up the charity Simple Truth, a fundraising campaign on behalf of the Kurds.[51] In May 1991, Archer organised a charity pop concert, starring Rod Stewart, Paul Simon, Sting and Gloria Estefan, who all performed free of charge. Archer stated that his charity had raised £57,042,000, though it was later reported that only £3 million came from the Simple Truth concert and appeal, the rest from aid projects sponsored by the British and other governments, with significant amounts pledged before the concert.[51] The charity would later incur further controversy. Having been previously rejected,[51] Archer was made a life peer on 27 July 1992 as Baron Archer of Weston-super-Mare, of Mark in the County of Somerset.[52] Prime Minister John Major recommended him largely because of Archer's role in aid to the Kurds.[51] Archer and Major had been friends for a number of years.[53]

Political statements in 1990s[edit]

In a speech at the 1993 Conservative conference, Archer urged then Home Secretary Michael Howard, to "Stand and deliver," saying: "Michael, I am sick and tired of being told by old people that they are frightened to open the door, they're frightened to go out at night, frightened to use the parks and byways where their parents and grandparents walked with freedom ... We say to you: stand and deliver!". He then attacked violent films and urged tougher prison conditions to prevent criminals from re-offending. He criticised the role of "do-gooders" and finished off the speech by denouncing the opposition party's law and order policies.[54] This was a time when Archer was actively seeking another front-line political role.[55]

On Question Time on 20 January 1994,[56] Archer said that 18 should be the age of consent for gay sex, as opposed to 21, which it was at the time.[57] Archer though was opposed to the age of consent for gay men being 16.[58] Historian David Starkey was on the same edition, and said of Archer: "Englishmen like you enjoy sitting on the fence so much because you enjoy the sensation."[57][58] Archer has also consistently been an opponent of a return to capital punishment.[59]

Allegations of insider dealings[edit]

In January 1994, Mary Archer, then a director of Anglia Television, attended a directors' meeting at which an impending takeover of Anglia Television by MAI, which owned Meridian Broadcasting, was discussed. The following day, Jeffrey Archer bought 50,000 shares in Anglia Television, acting on behalf of a friend, Broosk Saib. Shortly after this, it was announced publicly that Anglia Television would be taken over by MAI. As a result, the shares jumped in value, whereupon Archer sold them on behalf of his friend for a profit of £77,219.[33] The arrangements he made with the stockbrokers meant he did not have to pay at the time of buying the shares.[49]

An inquiry was launched by the Stock Exchange into possible insider trading. The Department of Trade and Industry, headed by Michael Heseltine, announced that Archer would not be prosecuted due to insufficient evidence. His solicitors admitted that he had made a mistake, but Archer later said that he had been exonerated.[33]

London mayoral candidature[edit]

In 1999, Archer had been selected by the Conservative Party as candidate for the London mayoral election of 2000, with the support of two former Prime Ministers, Baroness Thatcher and John Major.[60]

On 21 November 1999 the News of the World published allegations made by Ted Francis, a former friend, that Archer had committed perjury in his 1987 libel case. Archer withdrew his candidature the following day.[61] After the allegations broke, Archer was disowned by his party. Conservative leader William Hague explained: "This is the end of politics for Jeffrey Archer. I will not tolerate such behaviour in my party."[62] On 4 February 2000, Archer was expelled from the party for five years.[61]

Perjury trial and imprisonment[edit]


On 26 September 2000, Archer was charged with perjury and perverting the course of justice during the 1987 libel trial.[63] Ted Francis was charged with perverting the course of justice.[61] Simultaneously, Archer starred in a production of his own courtroom play The Accused, staged at London's Theatre Royal Haymarket. The play concerned the court trial of an alleged murderer and assigned the role of jury to the audience, which would vote on the guilt of Archer's character at the end of each performance.[64]

The perjury trial began on 30 May 2001, a month after Monica Coghlan's death in a road traffic collision.[65] Ted Francis claimed that Archer had asked him to provide a false alibi for the night Archer was alleged to have been with Monica Coghlan.[63] Angela Peppiatt, Archer's former personal assistant, also claimed Archer had fabricated an alibi in the 1987 trial. Peppiatt had kept a diary of Archer's movements, which contradicted evidence given during the 1987 trial.[66] Andrina Colquhoun, Archer's former mistress, confirmed that they had been having an affair in the 1980s, thus contradicting the claim that he and Mary Archer had been "happily married" at the time of the trial.[67]

Archer never spoke during the trial, though his wife Mary again gave evidence as she had done during the 1987 trial.[68] On 19 July 2001, Archer was found guilty of perjury and perverting the course of justice at the 1987 trial. He was sentenced to four years' imprisonment by Mr Justice Potts.[69] Francis was found not guilty. Prominent journalists admitted to having accepted Archer's hospitality after he was convicted.[70][71] Archer's mother had died shortly before he was sentenced and he was released for the day to attend her funeral.[72][73]


Archer was initially sent to HM Prison Belmarsh, a Category "A" prison, but was moved to HM Prison Wayland, a Category "C" prison in Norfolk, on 9 August 2001. Despite automatically qualifying as a category "D" prisoner, given it was a first conviction and he did not pose a serious risk of harm to the public, his status as such was suspended pending a police investigation into allegations about his Kurdish charity. He was then transferred to HM Prison North Sea Camp, an open prison, in October 2001. From there he was let out to work, briefly, at the Theatre Royal in Lincoln, and allowed occasional home visits.[74]

Media reports claimed he had abused this privilege by attending a lunch with a friend, Education Secretary Gillian Shephard.[75] In September 2002 he was transferred to a Category "B" prison, Lincoln.[76] After three weeks, he was moved to the Category "D" HM Prison Hollesley Bay in Suffolk.[77]

During his imprisonment, Archer was visited by a number of high-profile friends, including actor Donald Sinden[78] and entertainer Barry Humphries.[79]

In October 2002, Archer repaid the Daily Star the £500,000 damages he had received in 1987, as well as legal costs and interest of £1.3 million.[80] That month, he was suspended from Marylebone Cricket Club for seven years.[81]

On 21 July 2003, Archer was released on licence from Hollesley Bay after serving half of his sentence.[82] He remained a peer, there being no legal provision through which his peerage could be removed at the time other than passing a new Act of Parliament.[83] He also retained membership of the House of Lords, which did not then have the power to expel members; however, Archer has not taken an active part in the proceedings of the House. Politically, he is a non-affiliated member.[84]

Prison diaries[edit]

While in prison, Archer wrote the three-volume memoir A Prison Diary, with volumes fashioned after Dante's Divine Comedy, and named after the first three prisons in which he was kept.[85] His prison term also served as inspiration for nine of the 12 short stories in the collection Cat O' Nine Tales.[86]

Kurdish aid controversy[edit]

In July 2001, shortly after Archer was jailed for perjury, Scotland Yard began investigating allegations that millions of pounds had disappeared from his Kurdish charity.[51][87] In 1991, Archer had claimed to have raised £57,042,000.[51] In 1992, the Kurdish Disaster Fund wrote to Archer, complaining: "You must be concerned that the Kurdish refugees have seen hardly any of the huge sums raised in the west in their name." Kurdish groups claimed that little more than £250,000 had been received by groups in Iraq.[51]

A British Red Cross-commissioned KPMG audit of the cash showed no donations were handled by Archer and any misappropriation was "unlikely"; however, KPMG also could find no evidence to support Archer's claims to have raised £31.5 million from overseas governments. The police said they would launch a "preliminary assessment of the facts" from the audit but were not investigating the Simple Truth fund.[88]

Subsequent incidents[edit]

In 2004, the government of Equatorial Guinea alleged that Archer was one of the financiers of the failed 2004 coup d'état attempt against it, citing bank details and telephone records as evidence.[89] In 2009, Archer said: "I am completely relaxed about it. Mr Mann [Simon Mann, the English mercenary leader of the coup] has made clear that it's nothing to do with me." In 2011, Mann, imprisoned in Equatorial Guinea for his role in leading the failed 2004 coup d'état but released on humanitarian grounds later, told The Daily Telegraph that his forthcoming book, Cry Havoc, would reveal "the financial involvement of a controversial and internationally famous member of the British House of Lords in the plot, backed up by banking records." He claimed documents from the bank accounts in Guernsey of two companies Mann used as vehicles for organising the coup, showed a 'J H Archer' paying $135,000 into one of the firms.[90]

Personal life[edit]

Archer has been married to Mary Weeden since July 1966.[16] They met at Oxford University, where Weeden was studying chemistry at St Anne's College.[91] She went on to specialise in solar power.[92]

They have two children: William Archer (born 1972), a theatrical producer,[93] and James Archer (born 1974), a financial adviser and businessman.

In 1979, the Archers purchased the Old Vicarage, Grantchester,[94] a house associated with the poet Rupert Brooke. Every summer, they host a lavish garden party in the grounds to celebrate their wedding anniversary.[95] Following the near-bankruptcy of the Aquablast scandal, by the early 1980s, Archer was back in a comfortable financial position and began to hold shepherd's pie and Krug parties for prominent people at his London penthouse, which overlooks the River Thames and the Houses of Parliament.[7][23]

On 26 February 2006, on Andrew Marr's Sunday AM programme, Archer said he had no interest in returning to front-line politics and would pursue his writing instead.[96]

Archer in fiction[edit]

Archer was satirically portrayed as a misunderstood secret agent, saviour of Britain and mankind and "overall thoroughly good chap", by actor Damian Lewis in the BBC drama Jeffrey Archer: The Truth (2002).[97] Scriptwriter Guy Jenkin explained that "my Jeffrey Archer is the man who has frequently saved Britain over the last 30 years. He's beloved of all women he comes across, all men, all dogs—he's a superhero."[97] Ian Hislop and Nick Newman's 1994 BBC Radio 4 satirical series Gush purported to be "written by master storyteller Archie Jeffries".[98]

In the Amazon series Good Omens, a reference is made by one of the angels in Aziraphale's bookshop: "Something smells evil." Aziraphale replies, "Oh, that would be the Jeffrey Archer books, I'm afraid."

In the Doctor Who episode Silence in the Library, the Doctor mentions that the Library has whole continents of Jeffrey Archer.


Archer has published 42 works, which have been translated into 33 languages, with combined sales of more than 275 million copies.[99]

Kane and Abel series[edit]

Clifton Chronicles[edit]

William Warwick series[edit]

  • Nothing Ventured (2019)
  • Hidden in Plain Sight (2020)
  • Turn a Blind Eye (2021)
  • Over My Dead Body (2021)
  • Next in Line (2022)
  • Traitor's Gate (2023)

Other novels[edit]

Short stories/collections[edit]

  • A Quiver Full of Arrows (including "Old Love") (1980)
  • A Twist in the Tale (1988)
  • Fools, Knaves, and Heroes: Great Political Short Stories Editor, Introduction. (1991)
  • Twelve Red Herrings (1994)
  • The Collected Short Stories (1997) Collects A Quiver Full of Arrows, A Twist in the Tale and Twelve Red Herrings
  • To Cut a Long Story Short (2000)
  • Cat O'Nine Tales (2006)
  • And Thereby Hangs a Tale (2010)
  • The New Collected Short Stories (2011) Collects To Cut a Long Story Short, Cat O'Nine Tales, and And Thereby Hangs a Tale
  • The Jeffrey Archer Short Story Challenge Collection Editor, Contributor (Unique) (2013)
  • Four Warned (Quick Reads, 2014) Four shorts stories, all previously published (in Twelve Red Herrings, Cat O'Nine Tales and And Thereby Hangs a Tale)
  • It Can't Be October Already (2017) Single short story (included in Cat O'Nine Tales)
  • Tell Tale (2017)
  • The Short, the Long and the Tall (2020)


  • Beyond Reasonable Doubt (1987)
  • Exclusive (1989)
  • The Accused (2000)

Prison diaries (non-fiction)[edit]

For children[edit]

  • By Royal Appointment (1980)
  • Willy Visits the Square World (1980)
  • Willy and the Killer Kipper (1981)
  • The First Miracle (1994)

See also[edit]

  • Jonathan Aitken—Archer's contemporary, another Conservative politician imprisoned for perjury
  • Chris Huhne—Liberal Democrat politician, imprisoned for perverting the course of justice


  1. ^ Dictionary of International Biography. 34th Edition. Rains, Sara, ed. Cambridge: Melrose Press, 2008.
  2. ^ Sala, Lana (2022). "Scandal: Jeffrey Archer and the call-girl" (Documentary). Zinc Television London. London: Channel 5.
  3. ^ Odone, Christine (21 March 2013). "Jeffrey Archer: Mary would run the NHS beautifully". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  4. ^ Rufford, Nick. "Jeffrey Archer on his prison years and his latest crime caper". The Times. ISSN 0140-0460. Retrieved 16 May 2022.
  5. ^ Flood, Alison (15 June 2009). "Jeffrey Archer rewrites Kane and Abel 'for a new generation'". The Guardian. Retrieved 26 June 2022.
  6. ^ a b c Horowitz, Anthony (7 May 2011). "Jeffrey Archer interview: the saga continues". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 21 February 2016. Retrieved 20 January 2016.
  7. ^ a b c d e f g h i j k l Davies, Caroline (20 July 2001). "He lied his way to the top". The Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 10 November 2010. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  8. ^ a b c d Kelso, Paul (20 July 2001). "Mendacious, ambitious, generous and naive". The Guardian. London. Archived from the original on 12 March 2016.
  9. ^ Scott, Danny (26 January 2014). "Time and place: Jeffrey Archer". The Sunday Times. Archived from the original on 18 September 2016. Retrieved 18 September 2016.
  10. ^ a b c d Jack, Ian (23 October 2011). "Onwards, upwards, sometimes downwards". The Independent. Archived from the original on 25 September 2015. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  11. ^ a b Farndale, Nigel (2 March 2008). "Jeffrey Archer: The next chapter". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 24 September 2015. Retrieved 7 November 2015.
  12. ^ "The rise and fall of Jeffrey Archer". TheGuardian.com. 19 July 2001. Archived from the original on 8 December 2015. Retrieved 3 November 2015.
  13. ^ Scandal! Private Stories of Public Shame, Colin Wilson and Damon Wilson, 2003, pg 30
  14. ^ They F*** You Up, Oliver James, 2010, pg 254
  15. ^ "Lord Archer's tales charm audience" Archived 5 May 2013 at archive.today, Bristol Post, 24 September 2011
  16. ^ a b c d e f g Jeffrey, Simon (19 July 2001). "Rise and Fall of Jeffrey Archer". The Guardian. London. Archived from the original on 8 December 2015. Retrieved 3 November 2015.
  17. ^ Crick, Michael (24 July 1994). "Just Jeffrey: The child is father to the man". The Independent. Archived from the original on 19 September 2016. Retrieved 18 September 2016.
  18. ^ Jim Waley (22 July 2001). "Author of his own Demise". ninemsn. Archived from the original on 6 July 2011. Retrieved 20 April 2007.
  19. ^ "Olympedia – Wendell Mottley". Archived from the original on 29 April 2024. Retrieved 17 April 2024.
  20. ^ "All Time List". Archived from the original on 25 March 2024. Retrieved 25 March 2024.
  21. ^ "Beatles at Brasenose". www.bnc.ox.ac.uk. Brasenose College. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  22. ^ a b Blackhurst, Chris (19 July 2001). "Archer's fall: His was a life built on fiction. But in the final chapter, the facts caught up with him". The Independent. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  23. ^ a b c Watkins, Alan (21 July 2001). "A charming fraud. Without the charm". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  24. ^ Boggan, Steve; Lashmar, Paul (27 September 2000). "The accused: Jeffrey Archer. The accusation: Perjury (and a highly suspicious coincidence)". The Independent. Archived from the original on 20 December 2013. Retrieved 9 December 2013.
  25. ^ "Famous Authors: Jeffrey Archer". famousauthors.org. Archived from the original on 12 February 2014. Retrieved 9 December 2013.
  26. ^ Stubley, Peter. "Jeffrey Archer: Shepherds pie and Mayfair tarts". Court News UK. Archived from the original on 23 October 2015. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  27. ^ "Archive Listings". Lincolnshire Film Archive. Archived from the original on 2 April 2015. Retrieved 4 March 2015.
  28. ^ "Museum and Galleries (Admission Charges)" Archived 27 April 2014 at the Wayback Machine, Hansard, HC Deb 21 June 1971, vol 819, cc993-1067, col.1031-4
  29. ^ "Lord Archer answers your questions". BBC News. London. 1 February 1999. Archived from the original on 22 December 2007. Retrieved 14 June 2007.
  30. ^ Paul Foot, "Those suits" Archived 27 April 2014 at the Wayback Machine, London Review of Books, 7 September 1995.
  31. ^ "Jeffrey Archer: Biography". jeffreyarcher.co.uk. Archived from the original on 29 November 2013. Retrieved 9 December 2013.
  32. ^ "Jeffrey Archer books: First Among Equals". www.jeffreyarcher.co.uk. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015.
  33. ^ a b c Watt, Nicholas (30 October 1999). "Archer's share deal under scrutiny again". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 6 May 2010.
  34. ^ Kingston, Jeremy (20 September 1989). "Archer's Jaded News". The Times. London. p. 13.
  35. ^ "Jeffrey Archer: plays". www.jeffreyarcher.co.uk. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  36. ^ Sherwin, Adam (4 March 2015). "Jeffrey Archer accuses Bollywood of stealing his bestselling storylines". The Independent. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  37. ^ "Lord Archer: A twist to every chapter" Archived 4 June 2004 at the Wayback Machine, BBC News, 19 July 2001.
  38. ^ Barnacle, Hugo (10 May 1996). "Maxwell vs Murdoch - the untold story". The Independent. Archived from the original on 25 September 2015. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
  39. ^ John Darnton "At Lunch With: Jeffrey Archer; An Author's Sweet Revenge: Joining the House of Lords" Archived 5 October 2017 at the Wayback Machine, New York Times, 18 August 1993.
  40. ^ Wells, Emma (31 October 2010). "It's Archer's best plot yet". The Sunday Times. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
  41. ^ "The final novel in the Clifton Chronicles". www.jeffreyarcher.co.uk. Archived from the original on 6 March 2019. Retrieved 5 March 2019.
  42. ^ "The Short, The Long and The Tall". Pan Macmillan. Archived from the original on 6 September 2020. Retrieved 6 October 2020.
  43. ^ Chandler, Mark. "Macmillan lands Jeffrey Archer series in four-book deal". www.thebookseller.com. Archived from the original on 6 March 2019. Retrieved 5 March 2019.
  44. ^ Simpson, Craig (20 January 2020). "Jeffrey Archer 'suing former literary agents in High Court over claims he is owed £500,000'". The Daily Telegraph. Archived from the original on 12 January 2022. Retrieved 25 January 2020.
  45. ^ "Jeffrey Archer v Daily Star (1987): You could write a book about it". www.defamationwatch.com.au. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  46. ^ a b Rawnsley, Andrew (25 July 1987). "Archer wins record £500,000 damages". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  47. ^ Sengupta, Kim (28 June 2001). "Archer accused of failing to give libel win to charity". The Independent. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  48. ^ "Archer marriage under spotlight". London, UK: BBC. 14 June 2001. Archived from the original on 23 May 2010. Retrieved 1 December 2007.
  49. ^ a b "Star demands £2.2m from Archer". BBC News. London. 19 July 2001. Archived from the original on 18 July 2004.
  50. ^ Raphael, Adam (22 July 2001). "His guilt was writ large". The Observer. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
  51. ^ a b c d e f g Matthew Tempest, Matthew (16 August 2001). "Archer fraud allegations: the simple truth". The Guardian. London. Archived from the original on 27 April 2022. Retrieved 13 July 2022.
  52. ^ "No. 53005". The London Gazette. 30 July 1992. p. 12843.
  53. ^ Young, Hugo (23 November 1999). "Honest John Major landed his party with Lord Archer". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  54. ^ Travis, Alan (8 September 2003). "Archer offers advice on penal reform". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 3 November 2015.
  55. ^ "Archer in DTI shares inquiry". The Guardian. 8 July 1994. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  56. ^ Question Time, 20 January 1994 Archived 19 June 2015 at the Wayback Machine, IMDb
  57. ^ a b "The guidelines: Question Time turns 30" Archived 4 March 2016 at the Wayback Machine, The Guardian, 19 September 2009.
  58. ^ a b Ben Summerskill The Way We Are Now: Gay and Lesbian Lives in the 21st Century Archived 9 December 2017 at the Wayback Machine, London: Continuum, 2006, p.99
  59. ^ "Only Time Will Tell (Archer) - Author Bio". Lit Lovers. Archived from the original on 14 July 2014. Retrieved 2 July 2014.
  60. ^ "Lord Archer - A taste for fiction" Archived 21 February 2012 at the Wayback Machine, The Economist, 19 July 2001.
  61. ^ a b c "Timeline: Stranger than fiction". BBC. London, UK. 8 October 2002. Archived from the original on 1 July 2004.
  62. ^ White, Michael (23 November 1999). "Disgraced Archer jettisoned by Tories". The Guardian Unlimited. London. Retrieved 6 May 2010.
  63. ^ a b "Archer charged with perjury". The Independent. 25 September 2000. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  64. ^ "Review — The Accused". Curtain Up. 8 October 2002. Archived from the original on 3 December 2005.
  65. ^ Stokes, Paul (28 April 2001). "Monica Coghlan killed by robbery car". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 24 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  66. ^ "Ted Francis: Archer whistleblower". London, UK: BBC. 19 July 2001. Archived from the original on 24 March 2010.
  67. ^ Clough, Sue (20 June 2001). "My love affair with Archer cooled when he tidied up his private life". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 24 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  68. ^ Stanford, Peter (19 February 2016). "Mary Archer: 'Jeffrey asked from jail if I wanted a divorce, but I'm not a quitter'". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 25 February 2016. Retrieved 26 February 2016.
  69. ^ Clough, Sue (20 July 2001). "The end: Archer goes to jail". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 11 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  70. ^ Rawnsley, Andrew (22 July 2001). "Shepherd's pie and shampagne, anyone?". The Observer. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
  71. ^ Hoggart, Simon (28 July 2001). "Drink the Krug (but avoid the shepherd's pie)". The Guardian. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
  72. ^ "Archer jailed for perjury". London: BBC. 19 July 2001. Archived from the original on 22 May 2009.
  73. ^ McVeigh, Tracy (22 July 2001). "Disgraced Archer back in charge for a few sad hours of freedom". The Observer. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
  74. ^ Peachey, Paul (19 August 2002). "Dramatic entrance as Archer takes theatre's supporting role". The Independent. Retrieved 23 December 2015.[dead link]
  75. ^ Goodchild, Sophie (5 October 2002). "So that's what he was up to when he wasn't out for lunch". The Independent. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
  76. ^ "Archer moved from open prison" Archived 4 July 2004 at the Wayback Machine, BBC News, 26 September 2002
  77. ^ "Archer's 'Holiday Bay' Prison Move" Archived 27 April 2014 at the Wayback Machine, Sky.com, 17 October 2002.
  78. ^ Donald, Gideon (26 March 2009). "The Nudgeocon". New Statesman. Archived from the original on 27 April 2017. Retrieved 26 April 2017.
  79. ^ Eyre, Hermione (6 April 2008). "How We Met: Barry Humphries & Jeffrey Archer". The Independent. London. Retrieved 6 May 2010.[dead link]
  80. ^ Leonard, Tom (2 October 2002). "Archer settles £1.8m libel debt with newspaper". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 24 December 2015. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
  81. ^ Wilson, Jamie (28 October 2002). "MCC gives Archer out — for seven years". The Guardian. London, UK. Archived from the original on 2 October 2013. Retrieved 6 May 2010.
  82. ^ "Lord Archer freed from prison". BBC News. 22 September 2003. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
  83. ^ "Disgraced Archer may lose peerage". The Guardian. 20 July 2001. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
  84. ^ "Cameron snubs Archer's Lords bid". BBC News. 27 November 2005. Archived from the original on 3 February 2006. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
  85. ^ Howse, Christopher (19 October 2002). "Cup-a-Soup for the soul". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 24 December 2015. Retrieved 23 December 2015.
  86. ^ "Cat O' Nine Tales and Other Stories" Archived 10 November 2013 at the Wayback Machine, Publishers Weekly, 16 April 2007
  87. ^ "Archer faces 'missing aid' probe". BBC. London. 23 July 2001. Archived from the original on 26 June 2004. Retrieved 18 December 2007.
  88. ^ Boggan, Steve (24 April 2014). "Audit concludes Archer made up charity total". The Independent. London. Archived from the original on 5 March 2016. Retrieved 3 November 2015.
  89. ^ Pallister, David (13 October 2004). "New Archer link to coup plot alleged". The Guardian. London. Retrieved 22 August 2007.
  90. ^ Eden, Richard (28 August 2011). "Havoc as jailed mercenary Simon Mann provides "evidence" of peer's role in failed coup". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 31 August 2011. Retrieved 2 October 2011.
  91. ^ Grice, Elizabeth (4 October 2011). "Mary Archer: 'There are worse things in life than adultery'". The Telegraph. Archived from the original on 24 December 2015. Retrieved 3 November 2015.
  92. ^ "Darwin College: 17th Annual Lecture Series 2002". www.inference.phy.cam.ac.uk. Darwin College. Archived from the original on 22 August 2008. Retrieved 4 November 2015.
  93. ^ "William Archer profile at Bob&Co". London. Archived from the original on 14 November 2015. Retrieved 1 November 2015.
  94. ^ Scott, Danny (4 November 2018). "At home with Lord and Lady Archer". The Times. Archived from the original on 18 December 2018. Retrieved 17 December 2018.
  95. ^ Cusick, James (17 July 1994). "The Archers entertain a few close friends . . ". The Independent. Archived from the original on 23 December 2015. Retrieved 22 December 2015.
  96. ^ "Archer 'may vote in Lords again'". London, UK: BBC. 26 February 2006. Archived from the original on 14 June 2006.
  97. ^ a b "Jeffrey Archer: The Truth". BBC. Archived from the original on 13 December 2015.
  98. ^ "Gush". BBC. Archived from the original on 28 May 2022. Retrieved 28 May 2022.
  99. ^ "Jeffrey Archer: Publications". JeffreyArcher. Archived from the original on 12 August 2021. Retrieved 12 August 2021.
  100. ^ Archer, Jeffrey (1 April 2011) [1977]. Shall We Tell the President?. London: Pan Macmillan. ISBN 978-0-330-52475-9. Retrieved 12 August 2021.

Further reading[edit]

External links[edit]


Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by Member of Parliament for Louth
Succeeded by
Orders of precedence in the United Kingdom
Preceded by Gentlemen
Baron Archer of Weston-super-Mare
Followed by