Charles Moore rssNotes-CharlesMoore

Charles Moore was editor of The Spectator 1984 – 1990. He continues to write a weekly column, The Spectator’s Notes. You can read extracts of his column here.

Liz Kendall and Yvette Cooper. Photo: Getty.

Do Yvette Cooper and Liz Kendall look like leaders?

23 August 2015 10:00

A hidden reason for Mrs Thatcher’s victory in 1975 was that lots of older Tory backbenchers fancied her. She was 49 and made the best of it without obvious strain.… Continue reading

Jeremy Corbyn Takes The Lead In The Labour Leadership Race

If Jeremy Corbyn joins the No to EU campaign, he’ll drive voters to Cameron

22 August 2015 10:00

If the man with the dull beard does win, where will Labour stand in the European Union referendum? Jeremy Corbyn, being a hard leftist, is theoretically against the EU, but… Continue reading

Robert Conquest

Remembering Robert Conquest, 1917 – 2015

5 August 2015 16:04

Last month, in Stanford, California, I had lunch with Robert Conquest, poet, historian, literary editor of this paper in the early 1960s, exposer of Soviet totalitarianism. After Conquest’s book The… Continue reading

Jeremy Corbyn Takes The Lead In The Labour Leadership Race

There’s nothing hip about Jeremy Corbyn’s beard

3 August 2015 12:36

Mr Corbyn has a beard. If he becomes leader, he will be the first bearded leader of any main party since Keir Hardie. The beard as a fashion item is… Continue reading


Can my secretary marry her sister?

10 July 2015 14:00

Virginia Utley, my secretary when I edited this paper, has written to Prime Minister and Chancellor, jointly. She asks, ‘Please could you tell me what a family is?’ Nowadays, she… Continue reading

Euclid Tsakalotos addresses the Sinn Fein annual conference in Londonderry in 2015 (Photo: Paul Faith/Getty)

Euclid’s theorem of the Irish

10 July 2015 9:00

The excellently named Euclid Tsakalotos has become the Greek finance minister after the sacking (tsaking?) of Varoufakis. He was educated at St Paul’s in the 1970s, and went on to… Continue reading


Left-wing Eurosceptics are finally starting to reveal themselves

9 July 2015 16:19

Even if everything goes wronger still, the Greek No vote is a great victory for the left. Until now, the left has not mounted a serious challenge to the claims… Continue reading

IMF Managing Director Christine Lagarde (Photo: Getty)

The IMF doesn’t need to be run by a European

5 July 2015 8:30

How much longer should the IMF be run by a European? The job of the fund is to assist any member country which is in trouble, not to advance the… Continue reading

Supporters of the ultra nationalist party Golden Dawn during a demonstration outside parliament (Photo: Milos Bicanski/Getty)

Does the EU want the Greeks to vote for Golden Dawn?

4 July 2015 8:30

If Greece does vote Yes, and Mr Tsipras has to go, who is left to run the country? The voters have tried all the main parties, only to find them broken… Continue reading

Holborn during a heatwave  (Photo: Keystone/Getty Images)

British culture can’t cope with a heatwave

3 July 2015 13:20

I find it almost frightening to be stuck in London in a heatwave. It is not just the bad air. It is also the sense that this is something that… Continue reading

Prime Minister Tsipras Meets With Chancellor Merkel In Berlin

Why is the FT ordering Greece to do what Germany wants?

1 July 2015 13:46

‘The Greek people,’ the Financial Times leading article said on Monday, ‘would be well advised to listen closely to the words of Ms Merkel. The plebiscite will be a vote… Continue reading


Is animal extinction really the end of the world?

27 June 2015 18:52

‘Each year sees the disappearance of thousands of plant and animal species which our children will never see’, says Pope Francis in his gloomy encyclicalLaudato si. Can this possibly be true?… Continue reading

Image: PA

If Cameron is deleting all No. 10 emails, who will write his history?

17 June 2015 12:01

This is an extract from Charles Moore’s Notes in this week’s Spectator, out tomorrow. Subscribe from just £1. In a few weeks, I shall have finished the second volume of my threepart biography… Continue reading

Ed Llewellyn is Cameron's chief chum. But does this qualify him to be a member of the Privy Council?

Why has David Cameron appointed his chum Ed Llewellyn to the Privy Council?

7 June 2015 8:15

After the general election, Edward Llewellyn, the Prime Minister’s chief of staff, was made a Privy Councillor. Any member of the Privy Council is addressed as ‘Right Honourable’ and these… Continue reading

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Why change Westminster’s voting system? It’s unfair to parties, not to voters.

6 June 2015 11:00

Listening this week to someone from the Electoral Reform Society droning on about how we have just had the least representative election ever, I suddenly had an aperçu. Until now,… Continue reading

A figment of Hollywood's imagination? (Photo: Getty)

Does Chuck Blazer actually exist?

3 June 2015 15:35

We in the West all hate Sepp Blatter, so we pay too little attention to the manner in which the Fifa executives were arrested. For what reason, other than for… Continue reading

(Photo: Paul Faith/Getty)

Is gay marriage just a fad?

30 May 2015 10:00

Now that Ireland has voted Yes to same-sex marriage, it will be widely believed that this trend is unstoppable and those who oppose it will end up looking like people… Continue reading

Leon Brittan at the funeral of former British Prime Minister Baroness Thatcher in 2013 (Photo: Getty)

A display of cowardice at Leon Brittan’s funeral

27 May 2015 15:01

Leon Brittan’s memorial service on Tuesday packed the West London Synagogue, but there were some notable absentees. We in the congregation were informed that the government was represented by Lord… Continue reading

(Photo: Getty)

Cameron has one chance to abolish the licence fee and this is it

13 May 2015 13:09

As the news of John Whittingdale’s appointment as Culture Secretary came through, I happened to be sorting my pile of threatening letters from TV Licensing. It was taking me a… Continue reading

Denis and Margaret Thatcher (Photo: Keystone Features/Getty)

Did Mrs Thatcher ‘do’ God? Denis thought so, and he should know, says Charles Moore

11 April 2015 10:00

As I swink in the field of Thatcher studies, this book brings refreshment. It is a welcome and rare. Far too many writers attitudinise about Margaret Thatcher (for and against)… Continue reading

Former Chief Whip Andrew Mitchell Loses His Plebgate Libel Case

The Plebgate judge thought PC Rowland was a pleb

11 December 2014 12:55

In paragraph 135 of his judgment in the Andrew Mitchell ‘Plebgate’ case, Mr Justice Mitting says that P.C. Rowland, the police officer whom Mr Mitchell was suing for libel, is… Continue reading

Rare Roman Souvenir Acquired By The British Museum

The great David Ekserdjian deserves a museum of his own

8 August 2014 14:28

Ever since Mr Blair’s New Dawn of 1997, the dominant idea in public policy towards public collections has been ‘access’. The doctrine is more than half-right: art, antiquities etc paid… Continue reading

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How long before self-publicising Baroness Warsi pops up in another party?

7 August 2014 16:11

At the impressive Westminster Abbey vigil to mark the centenary of the first world war on Monday night, there was one big candle for each quarter of the Abbey, and… Continue reading

WW1 Recruitment Posters To Be Auctioned

4th August 1914 – my grandfather and his brother, aged 20, go to war

4 August 2014 8:00

This is the second part of Charles Moore’s notes. You can read the first part here. On Tuesday 4 August, NM rang his London house: ‘Roberta our house-maid said that… Continue reading

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WW1 Recruitment Posters To Be Auctioned

2nd August 1914 – my grandfather prepares for war

2 August 2014 8:00

This week’s issue is dated 2 August. On that date 100 years ago, my great-grandfather, Norman Moore (always known as ‘NM’), went to Sunday Mass. ‘Father Ryan,’ he noted in… Continue reading