Friday, 11 January 2013
I'm very pleased to hear that Andrew Marr is recovering, but still shocked by his stroke. ... I've been a long-term fan of his, ever since coming across him as a columnist on the Independent back in 1994. He seems to me to exemplify something of the best of what journalism can be. There's a real moral and intellectual gravity: he knows that ideas matter and that there are deeper currents beneath the political and economic froth of the news. A boldness in being willing to spot patterns, sometimes before all the evidence is fully in: this it seems to me is the particular thing journalists can do above all, and it's also what makes him such a consistently interesting historian. And an underlying sense of fun which stops him from taking himself or the whole business at all seriously: he communicates a mischievous sense of relish which manages to cheer up almost anything. Plus he can write. I'm tempted to say that, for a Scot who studied at Trinity Hall, Cambridge, these qualities are hardly surprising. Still, for my money he's one of the most interesting people in modern Britain. Get well soon.