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Andrew Ferguson Neil


1949 -

Journalist and broadcaster. Born in Paisley, Neil was educated at Paisley Grammar School and the University of Glasgow. Having graduated in Politics and Economics, he worked briefly for the Conservative Party research unit before joining The Economist as a political and business correspondent. He went on to become their UK editor.

With no experience of national newspapers, he was appointed editor and chief correspondent of the Sunday Times (1983), changing the political bias of that newspaper to become a staunch supporter of the Thatcher Conservative government. He was in the front-line of proprietor Rupert Murdoch's battle with the Fleet Street unions which revolutionised the newspaper industry in Britain. Also for Murdoch, Neil presided over the launch of Sky television, now a highly profitable and successful satellite broadcaster. In 1994, Neil was seconded as Executive Editor of Fox Network News, but left to launch a career in front of the camera. He has hosted the Andrew Neil Show and the late-night political discussion programmes Midnight Hour (1994) and Dispatch Box for the BBC, together with Thursday Night Live for ITV and taken part in 60 Minutes for CBS and Dateline for ABC in the USA. Neil has also hosted radio shows on BBC Radio 5 and Radio Scotland.

In 1996, Neil joined the Edinburgh-based Scotsman newspaper as Editor-in-Chief and has been Publisher of Press Holdings (the owners of the Scotsman group of newspapers) since 1999. Neil has published several books on media-related topics, including The Cable Revolution (1982), Britain's Free Press: Does it Have One? (1988) and Full Disclosure (1996).

Never married, Neil devoted his life to his career, responsible for breaking major stories such as Israel having nuclear weapons. St. Andrew's University awarded Neil an honorary degree in 2002.


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