The Oldie's agony aunt offers to mediate with publisher in bid to get Richard Ingrams reinstated as editor

 

The Oldie magazine’s agony aunt has offered to stage a mediation between Richard Ingrams and the magazine’s publisher in a bid to get the editor, who resigned last week, reinstated.

Ingrams, 76, who founded The Oldie 22 years ago, announced his retirement after declining to attend a disciplinary hearing called by publisher James Pembroke. Ingrams said he was “too old” to attend.

Oldie contributors have rallied in support of Ingrams, who sent an email to supporters, including Terry Wogan, in which he indicated that he would be willing to return to his post if Pembroke “accepts the few changes that I have already outlined”.

Mavis Nicholson, The Oldie’s own agony aunt, has offered to mediate between the warring parties.

Press Gazette reported that she had written a letter to Pembroke, with Ingrams copied in, which read: “I’m sticking my neck out. Even with all that’s been said in the press, I think you and Richard should calm down and get together and continue with the unique magazine you’ve both worked for. Just turn over the page and unite.

“I’ll listen to your two moans if you like, and I’ll tell you that with all of them they won’t count when you realise what a unique magazine The Oldie is with you both there. I fear for its future otherwise.”

Valerie Grove, the magazine’s wireless correspondent, said Ingrams’ supporters would “implore them to talk again, to try to restore the partnership which has made this unique magazine”.

A personality clash between Pembroke and Ingrams came to a head when the publisher called a meeting to address a recent fall in The Oldie’s news-stand circulation and his concerns about the quality of its recent covers. Ingrams refused to attend, prompting the disciplinary action.

In his email to contributors, Ingrams wrote: “After the Google driverless car we now have the Pembroke editorless magazine, as from next week The Oldie will have no editor.

“But who will want to take the job on and face a demoralised staff, angry contributors and readers cancelling their subscriptions...? A poisoned chalice situation if ever there was.

“The magazine can be saved if enough protesters force Pembroke to accept the seriousness of his situation. I am prepared to resume the editorship so long as he accepts the few changes that I have already outlined.”

However Jeremy Lewis, Oldie's commissioning editor, who has been made acting editor of the title, told contributors in an email that relations between Ingrams and Pembroke were now “beyond repair”. Lewis wrote: “I know for certain that there is now absolutely no chance of the owners of the Oldie re-employing Richard.”

Pembroke led a 2007 buyout of the title, which reported losses of £1.7 million. Despite the recent fall in sales, subscriptions have held up and the magazine’s circulation of around 44,000 represents growth of 20,000 in the past decade.

Possible candidates to become Oldie editor include Mark Ellen, the music magazines editor and broadcaster.

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebookA unique anthology of reporting and analysis of a crucial period of history
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Media

Guru Careers: Software Developer / C# Developer

£40-50K: Guru Careers: We are seeking an experienced Software / C# Developer w...

Guru Careers: Software Developer

£35 - 40k + Benefits: Guru Careers: We are seeking a Software Developer (JavaS...

Guru Careers: Senior Account Manager / SAM

£30 - 35k: Guru Careers: A Senior Account Manager / SAM is needed to join the ...

Ashdown Group: Digital Marketing Manager (EMEA) - City, London

£55000 - £65000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Digital Marketing Manager...

Day In a Page

Sun, sex and an anthropological study: One British academic's summer of hell in Magaluf

Sun, sex and an anthropological study

One academic’s summer of hell in Magaluf
From Shakespeare to Rising Damp... to Vicious

Frances de la Tour's 50-year triumph

'Rising Damp' brought De la Tour such recognition that she could be forgiven if she'd never been able to move on. But at 70, she continues to flourish - and to beguile
'That Whitsun, I was late getting away...'

Ian McMillan on the Whitsun Weddings

This weekend is Whitsun, and while the festival may no longer resonate, Larkin's best-loved poem, lives on - along with the train journey at the heart of it
Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath in a new light

Songs from the bell jar

Kathryn Williams explores the works and influences of Sylvia Plath
How one man's day in high heels showed him that Cannes must change its 'no flats' policy

One man's day in high heels

...showed him that Cannes must change its 'flats' policy
Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Is a quiet crusade to reform executive pay bearing fruit?

Dominic Rossi of Fidelity says his pressure on business to control rewards is working. But why aren’t other fund managers helping?
The King David Hotel gives precious work to Palestinians - unless peace talks are on

King David Hotel: Palestinians not included

The King David is special to Jerusalem. Nick Kochan checked in and discovered it has some special arrangements, too
More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years

End of the Aussie brain drain

More people moving from Australia to New Zealand than in the other direction for first time in 24 years
Meditation is touted as a cure for mental instability but can it actually be bad for you?

Can meditation be bad for you?

Researching a mass murder, Dr Miguel Farias discovered that, far from bringing inner peace, meditation can leave devotees in pieces
Eurovision 2015: Australians will be cheering on their first-ever entrant this Saturday

Australia's first-ever Eurovision entrant

Australia, a nation of kitsch-worshippers, has always loved the Eurovision Song Contest. Maggie Alderson says it'll fit in fine
Letterman's final Late Show: Laughter, but no tears, as David takes his bow after 33 years

Laughter, but no tears, as Letterman takes his bow after 33 years

Veteran talkshow host steps down to plaudits from four presidents
Ivor Novello Awards 2015: Hozier wins with anti-Catholic song 'Take Me To Church' as John Whittingdale leads praise for Black Sabbath

Hozier's 'blasphemous' song takes Novello award

Singer joins Ed Sheeran and Clean Bandit in celebration of the best in British and Irish music
Tequila gold rush: The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product

Join the tequila gold rush

The spirit has gone from a cheap shot to a multi-billion pound product
12 best statement wallpapers

12 best statement wallpapers

Make an impact and transform a room with a conversation-starting pattern
Paul Scholes column: Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?

Paul Scholes column

Does David De Gea really want to leave Manchester United to fight it out for the No 1 spot at Real Madrid?