Online history talk: Chris Moncrieff, from Walthamstow to Westminster.

Chris Moncrieff, political reporter and ‘Fleet St legend’, lived in Hale End for 57 years. His daughter, tour guide Joanna, tells his story.

About this Event

Chris Moncrieff (1931 to 2019) who lived locally in Hale End Road from 1962 until his death, was a political reporter who covered many significant stories whilst working for the Press Association. Described as both a ‘Fleet Street legend’ and ‘national treasure’ the House of Commons press bar was named ‘Moncrieffs’ in his honour in 2007.

At the press gallery’s bicentenary dinner in 2003, then prime minister Tony Blair described Moncrieff as “the gateway to the nation”. Sir Nicholas Winterton (then) MP said about him in 2006: “To me, the best journalist in this place is the oldest journalist, Chris Moncrieff. You tell him something; he reports it; he does not dress it up; he actually reports. … Chris Moncrieff is the straightest man you could ever come across.” On Moncrieff’s death on 22 November 2019 Alistair Campbell tweeted: “Probably filed more political stories than anyone in the history of political journalism. Liked by everyone. Trusted to be fair and straight by everyone. And nobody in the Westminster press corps ever worked harder. Sad day.”

This talk by his eldest daughter Joanna, tells the story of his life via images mostly not seen before, found whilst clearing the family home. Joanna will also include local stories that had his mark on them, such as his suggestion for local cows to be painted with luminous paint and how his wife Maggie ended up on the Today programme talking about a cake she entered into a local school fete.

Joanna Moncrieff has been leading guided walks and more recently virtual tours in the West End, Clerkenwell & Islington and Walthamstow and Chingford since 2009. Her walks are mostly off the beaten track taking in hidden alleyways and lesser known streets. 

This talk is available for booking by private groups. Please contact Joanna via her website if you would like to book her

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