John Diamond (journalist)
10 May 1953|
Hackney, London, England
|Died||2 March 2001
Westminster, London, England
|Cause of death||Esophageal cancer|
|Notable credit(s)||Sunday Times, Daily Mirror|
(m. 1992–2001; his death)
John Diamond (10 May 1953 – 2 March 2001), was a British journalist and broadcaster. He was married to the food writer and TV cook Nigella Lawson from 1992 until his death from Esophageal cancer in 2001.
Education and training
Diamond was the son of a biochemist and a fashion designer, and had a secular Jewish upbringing. He grew up in Upper Clapton and Woodford Green, he then attended the City of London School and trained as an English teacher at Trent Park College of Education, now part of Middlesex University. Later he taught at an all-girls school Dalston Mount Comprehensive, before switching to journalism.
Diamond wrote a regular column for the Saturday edition of The Times from 1992 onwards called "Something for the Weekend", and worked as a presenter on BBC radio and television. He met his second wife, then journalist Nigella Lawson, when they were both writing for The Sunday Times. They married in Venice in 1992.
Illness, awards, and death
In 1997, Diamond was diagnosed with throat cancer. He wrote about his experiences with cancer in his newspaper column, for which he won a prestigious What The Papers Say award. In 1999 he was shortlisted for the Samuel Johnson Prize for his book C: Because Cowards Get Cancer Too.... A BBC documentary was filmed for Inside Story which followed him through various treatments, and showed his frustration with his speech difficulties following throat, and later tongue, surgery.
C: Because Cowards Get Cancer Too... was adapted into a play by Victoria Coren called A Lump In My Throat, which was itself later adapted for television. Diamond's second book, Snake Oil and Other Preoccupations, was edited by his brother-in-law Dominic Lawson, editor of The Sunday Telegraph, and published posthumously (with a foreword by Richard Dawkins). It contained the six chapters of his "uncomplimentary look at the world of complementary medicine" which he had completed before his death, and some of his columns from The Times and the Jewish Chronicle.
Diamond was the recipient of the HealthWatch Award for 2000.
- John Diamond, C: Because Cowards Get Cancer Too..., Vermilion, 1999 (ISBN 0-09-181665-3)
- John Diamond, Richard Dawkins (foreword), Dominic Lawson (editor), Snake Oil and Other Preoccupations, Vintage, 2001 (ISBN 0-09-942833-4).
- Jay Rayner and Roy Greenslade Obituary: John Diamond, The Guardian, 3 March 2001
- "Tribute to John Diamond". lastingtribute.co.uk. Archived from the original on 16 December 2009. Retrieved 12 June 2009.
- Foreword reprinted in his book A Devil's Chaplain (2003).
- The HealthWatch Award 2000: John Diamond Archived 16 May 2008 at the Wayback Machine. – HealthWatch. Includes his full presentation, in which he tells about his encounter with a believer in alternative medicine.
- Book Reviews: John Diamond's C and .... – Bandolier