Melanie McDonagh

Melanie McDonagh is a leaderwriter for the Evening Standard and Spectator contributor. Irish, living in London.

Turkey Dinner

The Sunday roast is dying – and the Tories are to blame

22 August 2016 13:45

It is fair to say that I am never one to take the Polly Toynbee approach to things – or…

An image which appeared online purporting to show burning wreckage from the Russian helicopter (Photo: Reuters)

Who should we support in Syria’s brutal civil war?

1 August 2016 14:52

Today, Syrian rebels in Idlib shot down a Russian helicopter; five Russians were killed and footage from the site shows…

Father Jacques Hamel (Photo: AFP)

Will Europe finally face up to the threat of Islamism?

26 July 2016 13:56

On the bright side, the elderly priest who was murdered during mass in Saint-Etienne-du-Rouvray near Rouen, had pretty well a…

Angela Eagle, the Labour MP who challenged Mr Corbyn for the leadership, has been told by police to stop holding open surgeries with her constituents over concerns for her safety. (Photo: Getty)

Have the police completely lost the plot today?

21 July 2016 18:53

Is it something to do with Theresa May’s departure as Home Secretary, or are the police completely losing it? The first…


Theresa May’s reshuffle defies any logic

14 July 2016 21:26

When I went to work at Foyle’s Bookshop as a student, when the owner Christina Foyle still ran the place,…


Why politics and parenthood should be natural allies

13 July 2016 11:35

When Sadiq Khan was doing the rounds in his mayoral campaign he would, every so often, include some reference to…

(Photo: Getty)

The reason Theresa May is the better candidate has nothing to do with motherhood

9 July 2016 10:58

Well! It hasn’t taken long for the commentariat to get over their excitement at the prospect of another female prime…


Theresa May’s Ottolenghi revelation is gobsmacking

5 July 2016 10:22

Forget footwear. The most telling thing about Theresa May, as suggested in interview with Robert Peston, is her cookbook collection…

Screen Shot 2016-07-03 at 11.36.44

Femocracy – welcome to the benign new world of female governance

3 July 2016 11:37

Call it femocracy or gynocracy (my preference), or, a new age of women, as Justine Greening has it, the excited…

Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg Speech On International Development

Is the man who gave us fixed term parliaments now trying to do away with them?

27 June 2016 15:27

Nick Clegg has written an interesting column for the Evening Standard today about the referendum result. You will not be…

Heading to the polls. Photo by Dan Kitwood/Getty Images

There will be big trouble if Brexit doesn't mean lower migration

26 June 2016 17:49

It does seem to me that there’s been a misunderstanding about what, exactly, a referendum is about. It’s not a…

Taoiseach Enda Kenny. Image: PAULO NUNES DOS SANTOS/AFP/Getty Images

What does Brexit mean for Britain's relations with Ireland?

24 June 2016 16:13

The Irish prime minister, Enda Kenny, was quick off the block to react to the referendum result – see his…


This EU anarchy is more interesting than the alternative

24 June 2016 12:34

Don’t know about you, but the healing process is proving difficult from my point of view in dealing with my…

(Photo: Getty)

The collective amnesia over Turkey and the EU is astonishing

22 June 2016 13:01

Just wondering: is there anyone out there who actually remembers supporting Turkish membership of the EU? Last night Sadiq Khan…

What’s the point of The Templeton Prize? After going to last night’s ceremony, I’m not sure

27 May 2016 14:17

The Templeton Prize is known to lots of people from Richard Dawkins’ intemperate denunciation of it in The God Delusion…

What seeing Thomas a Becket’s elbow taught me about the church

25 May 2016 18:06

It’s not every day, you know, you get to see a bit of the elbow of Thomas a Becket. In…


What was the Queen meant to say about the Chinese officials?

11 May 2016 16:46

A retired diplomat I know had no doubt about where the blame lay for the Queen’s Very Rude episode. ‘Sounds…


Sadiq Khan’s victory has caused a Great Smug to settle over London

9 May 2016 17:57

London is going through one of its periodic fits of smugness right now, for which the only real parallel is…

Boris Johnson Leads 48Hour Brexit Blitz Of Campaigning

Has Boris finally realised why Turkey shouldn’t join the EU?

18 April 2016 14:44

So good to see Boris Johnson making the obvious case for Brexit, namely that the Turks are at the door.…

David Cameron Addresses University Students Over The EU Referendum

There’s a right way – and a wrong way – to hold a referendum

10 April 2016 11:56

Personally, I love referendums. It’s the notion that the people really can have things their way which is so pleasing,…

(Photo: Getty)

Justin Welby has discovered who his genetic father really was – isn’t uncertainty better?

9 April 2016 8:57

A few things come to mind as a result of the Archbishop of Canterbury’s bombshell revelation that his father was…

(Photo: Getty)

Want to stand up to terrorism? Then keep calm and carry on

24 March 2016 10:50

As I’m sure is the case with many of you, I’ve been giving serious thought to how best to Stand Up To Terrorism,…

German Chancellor Angela Merkel and Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan (Photo: Getty)

How would Turkey’s EU membership stem the flow of migrants?

9 March 2016 14:47

Stop me if I haven’t got this right. But as I understand it, as a result of the deal that…

teh queen

Is anyone surprised that the Queen didn’t approve of gay marriage?

7 March 2016 15:43

Of all the frankly riveting stuff in the Daily Mail’s serial of what it calls ‘The Unknown Queen’ — nicely timed…


The DfE has issued guidance on exclamation marks. How Orwellian is that!

6 March 2016 18:04

A friend of mine, another journalist, is getting terrifically worked up about the Department for Education’s persecution of exclamation marks.…