Stephen Jessel

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Stephen Jessel (born 9 August 1943) was for many years a British BBC correspondent, based between 1977 and 1995 in Paris, Beijing, Brussels, Washington DC and again Paris. He had previously worked, after leaving university, for The Times of London as a reporter and education correspondent. Before joining the BBC foreign staff he worked as reporter and again education correspondent.

Jessel, the son of one-time The Times defence correspondent Robert Jessel, who died aged 37, and Penelope Blackwell (later Dame Penelope Jessel), and the brother of journalist David Jessel, attended the Dragon School in Oxford.[1] and Shrewsbury School in Shropshire where he won a scholarship. He specialised in the classics and won an Open Exhibition to Balliol College, Oxford. He spent four years at Balliol gaining a first in Mods and a Third in Greats.

As a BBC correspondent he was a prolific contributor to From our Own Correspondent and remained with the BBC as a freelance after ceasing to be a staff correspondent and broadcast after the death of Princess Diana in Paris.[2]

He later worked for AFP as a translator and sub-editor, and taught at the now-defunct Journalists in Europe Fund as well as in Kosovo, Algeria, Albania, Georgia and Liberia. He worked extensively as an editor for the OECD.

In 1970 he married Jane Margaret Marshall, with whom he had a daughter in 1981.


  1. ^ "Eminent Dragons". Dragon School. Archived from the original on September 2, 2011. Retrieved October 7, 2011.
  2. ^ "Diana, Princess of Wales: A Pick of the Continuity Announcements Special". MHP: Pick of the Continuity Announcements. 29 March 2000. Retrieved October 7, 2011. External link in |work= (help)