Robert Crampton

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Robert Crampton
Born (1964-08-10) 10 August 1964 (age 51)
Blackpool, England
Ethnicity English
Education Wolfreton School; Wadham College, Oxford
Occupation Journalist
Notable credit(s) Beta Male, The Times
Spouse(s) Nicola Almond
Children Sam, Rachel
Relatives Peter Crampton (father)

Robert Crampton (born 10 August 1964, Blackpool, Lancashire) is an award-winning English journalist. He is also the son of Peter Crampton, former Member of the European Parliament for Humberside.

Early life[edit]

He was born in Blackpool[1] in 1964.[2] His family lived in Solihull for a while[3] before moving to Hull in 1970[4] where he grew up in an affluent suburb.[5] He has a brother David, born 1962. His parents were active in politics locally.[4] His father Peter Crampton was a teacher and lecturer in geography[6] and later a United Kingdom member of the European Parliament from 1989 to 1999,[7][8] representing the Humberside constituency for the Labour Party. His mother came from London and was a geography teacher.[1][3]

Crampton attended St Andrews County Primary School, then Wolfreton School, a local comprehensive school.[9] At this time he was heavily involved in CND.[10] When he was 18 he was convicted of a breach of the peace and fined £20 for his part in a political demonstration.[11]

After leaving school he retook his A-levels,[12] and then went on to Wadham College, Oxford,[13] in 1986.[9] Later he attended the City University Journalism Department at City University, London[citation needed].


He joined The Times as a columnist in 1991.[14] He writes Beta Male, a regular weekly column in The Times Saturday magazine. In 2008 he used the column to advertise his wish to gain practice in public speaking, "not because I was any good, but because I wasn't and wanted to be...At the risk of humiliation I want to come to talk to your school, business, darts team, whatever. I do not require, nor indeed do I merit, any payment." He received more than 400 requests.[10] He subsequently described his experiences of speaking at Caistor Grammar School in Lincolnshire, Highbury Grove School in North London, a training day in Bath, a Rotary Club, a women's group, a prison, a church sermon, as a best man at a wedding and delivering a eulogy at a family funeral.[10]

He also writes features and interviews in the newspaper itself. In February 2008 he exclusively previewed the new Wii Fit computer game.[15]

His past interviewees include Tony Blair,[16] David Cameron,[17] Paul McCartney,[18] Kate Winslet,[19] Kelly Brook,[20] Alex Ferguson,[21] David Walliams,[22] Liam Gallagher,[23] Sienna Miller,[24] and John Terry.[25]

In 1999 he signed a deal with a publisher to write a book, tracking down his old O-Level classmates. The book was given the working title "Whatever happened to...?" and even issued with an ISBN number (ISBN 0385601891), but Crampton got bored with the project and never finished it.[26]

Critical reception[edit]

The author and journalist Bryan Appleyard described his Beta Male column as "light in tone, insightful but unpretentious, and above all, just the right length. I always enjoy Crampton – a naturally funny, likeable columnist. He's the kind of fellow you'd like to go for beer with, so he'd make a good US President. It's a real drag when he's away and a substitute fills in for him.[27]"

Nigel Williams[disambiguation needed] has praised his interviews: "Robert Crampton's work I really like. Somehow, he combines showmanship with something like self-effacement in a very entertaining way. To me he sounds like he's telling the truth, which is one of the most difficult things to pull off in journalism. His opinions sound hard-won and thought through, and that's to do with his prose style, which puts me in mind of what Orwell said about good prose being like a window[28]".


Personal life[edit]

He met his future wife Nicola Almond when at school aged 12 in 1977, but only started going out with her thirteen years later.[32] They married on 2 May 1998 in the City of London.[33] They live in Hackney, London,[10][34] with their children Sam and Rachel.[35] They own a second home at Kingsdown Park near Deal, Kent.[34]


  1. ^ a b Crampton, Robert (10 November 2007). "Beta male". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  2. ^ Crampton, Robert (6 October 2007). "Beta male". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  3. ^ a b Crampton, Robert (4 November 2006). "Beta male". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  4. ^ a b Crampton, Robert (2 January 2010). "To Hull and back changing times but no Broken Britain". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  5. ^
  6. ^ Asthana, Anushka; Sherman, Jill. The Times (London)  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  7. ^
  8. ^
  9. ^ a b Crampton, Robert. "Beta+male". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  10. ^ a b c d Crampton, Robert (26 December 2009). "My year of public speaking". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  11. ^ Crampton, Robert (3 May 2008). "Beta male". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  12. ^ Crampton, Robert (22 May 2006). "Comprehensively shafted how the Labour Party failed my generation". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  13. ^
  14. ^ Charter, David. The Times (London) Retrieved 22 May 2010.  Missing or empty |title= (help)
  15. ^ Crampton, Robert (16 February 2008). "We test the Nintendo Wii Fit". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  16. ^ Crampton, Robert (30 April 2005). "The Main Man Tony Blair interview". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  17. ^ Crampton, Robert (29 March 2007). "Tackle a hoody like Dave doesn t". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  18. ^ Crampton, Robert (5 December 2009). "Paul McCartney in love and back on the road". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  19. ^
  20. ^ Asthana, Anushka; Sherman, Jill (21 January 2006). "Kelly Brook". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  21. ^ Dickinson, Matt (21 February 2003). "Eriksson shook hands on Old Trafford job offer". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  22. ^ Crampton, Robert (26 September 2009). "David Walliams on women dressing up and Mr Stink". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  23. ^ Crampton, Robert (9 August 2008). "Liam Gallagher on celebrity fatherhood and hating Coldplay". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  24. ^ Crampton, Robert (2 February 2008). "Sienna Miller talks love peoplepleasing nesting and niceness". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  25. ^ Crampton, Robert (13 February 2010). "The rise and fall of John Terry". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  26. ^ Crampton, Robert (31 January 2009). "Beta male". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  27. ^
  28. ^ "An alternative view of tonight's British Press Awards". The Independent (London). 26 March 2007. Retrieved 22 May 2010. [dead link]
  29. ^ "British Press Awards shortlist". The Guardian (London). 14 February 2002. Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  30. ^ "British Press Awards: full list of winners". The Guardian (London). 17 March 2004. Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  31. ^ "British Press Awards 2007 shortlists". The Guardian (London). 27 February 2007. Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  32. ^ Crampton, Robert (9 January 2010). "Beta male". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  33. ^ Crampton, Robert (4 May 2010). "Am I the only man in Britain who actually likes politicians". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  34. ^ a b Margolis, Jonathan (30 August 2008). "The rise of readymade holiday villages". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 
  35. ^ Crampton, Robert (25 May 2007). "California campervan". The Times (London). Retrieved 22 May 2010. 

External links[edit]