Rosie Boycott

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Rosie Boycott
Born Rosel Marie Boycott
(1951-05-13) 13 May 1951 (age 66)
St. Helier, Jersey
Education University of Kent
Occupation Journalist and editor
Spouse(s) Charles Howard

Rosel Marie "Rosie" Boycott (born 13 May 1951) is a British journalist and feminist.

Journalism career[edit]

The daughter of Major Charles Boycott and Betty Le Sueur Boycott, Rosel Marie "Rosie" Boycott was born in St Helier, Jersey. She was educated at the independent Cheltenham Ladies' College and read mathematics at the University of Kent. After working briefly for the radical magazine Friends in 1971,[1] she co-founded the feminist magazine Spare Rib in 1971 with Marsha Rowe. Two years later she and Rowe became directors of Virago Press, a publishing concern committed to women's writing, with Carmen Callil, who had founded the company the previous year.

From 1992–96, she was editor of the UK edition of men's magazine Esquire. She headed both The Independent and its sister publication the Independent on Sunday (1996–98). While editing the Independent on Sunday in 1997, she campaigned for the decriminalisation of cannabis use by individuals,[2] earning her the nickname "Rizla Rosie".[3] She addressed the Decriminalise Cannabis rally in London's Trafalgar Square on 28 March 1998.[4]

Later, she edited the Daily Express (May 1998–January 2001), leaving soon after the newspaper was bought by Richard Desmond, who replaced her with Chris Williams. She is currently the Travel Editor for The Oldie magazine and hosts The Oldie Travel Awards each year.[citation needed]

Outside journalism[edit]

Rosie Boycott, and Severine von Tscharner Fleming, at the Port Eliot Lit Fest, July 2007.

Boycott has presented the BBC Radio 4 programme A Good Read. She has sat on judging panels for literary awards, notably chairing the panel judging the 2001 Orange Prize for Fiction. She is also a media advisor for the Council of Europe.[5] Boycott is a Trustee of the Hay Festival in the UK and in Cartagena, Colombia. In March 2002, she denounced the New Labour government as "more reminiscent of a dictatorship than a free healthy democratic system",[6] and announced her support for the Liberal Democrats. She was rumoured to have considered becoming a Parliamentary candidate.

Boycott made several appearances on Newsnight Review and other cultural and current affairs programmes, where the fact that she is a recovering alcoholic has been discussed. She started drinking heavily again after losing her job at the Express.[7] She was banned from driving for three years in September 2003 after crashing on the A303 in Wiltshire, injuring another driver. She was cut free from the wreckage. A court was told she had also been caught drunk driving the day before.[8] Since her accident, Boycott has been running a farm in Somerset.[9] She campaigned for Diana, Princess of Wales in the 2002 BBC programme to find the greatest Briton.

On 5 August 2008 she was appointed as the chairman of London Food as part of Conservative Mayor Boris Johnson's attempt to help improve Londoners’ access to healthy, locally produced and affordable food. In September 2007, Boycott appeared in the third series of Hell's Kitchen, and was the first contestant to be voted off. In June 2009 she appeared on Celebrity MasterChef. The same month she was one of five volunteers who took part in a BBC series of three programmes Famous, Rich and Homeless about living penniless on the streets of London.[10]

Boycott is a supporter of the Women's Equality Party.[11]



  1. ^ ibiblio: Friends magazine: Rosie Boycott
  2. ^ News briefs: British Newspaper, the Independent on Sunday, Calls for Marijuana Decriminalization
  3. ^ BBC News: Boycott's climb to the top
  4. ^ Rosie Boycott's speech in Trafalgar Square, 28 March 1998.
  5. ^ New Statesman - Full list of judges
  6. ^ BBC News: Mowlam turns up heat on Blair
  7. ^ Josh Lacey Here be monsters, The Guardian, 26 May 2007, accessed 6 January 2008.
  8. ^ Steve Bird Alcoholic ex-editor gets driving ban, The Times, 4 September 2003, accessed 6 January 2008.
  9. ^ Mark Townsend My rebirth as a latterday land girl, The Observer, 20 May 2007, accessed 6 January 2008.
  10. ^ BBC page about Famous, Rich and Homeless
  11. ^ Catherine Mayer (host), Jo Brand (guest) and Rosie Boycott (guest) (3 April 2016). Jo Brand & Rosie Boycott @ 5x15 - Women's Equality Party (Video). 5x15 Stories via YouTube. Retrieved 28 April 2016. 

External links[edit]

Media offices
Preceded by
Charles Wilson
Editor of The Independent on Sunday
1996- May 1998
Succeeded by
Kim Fletcher
Preceded by
Andrew Marr
Editor of The Independent
January 1998 - March 1998
Succeeded by
Rosie Boycott and Andrew Marr
Preceded by
Rosie Boycott
Editor of The Independent
(jointly with Andrew Marr)

March 1998 - May 1998
Succeeded by
Simon Kelner
Preceded by
Richard Addis
Editor of the Daily Express
1998 - 2001
Succeeded by
Chris Williams