Amanda Platell

Amanda Jane Platell (born 12 November 1957)[1][2] is an Australian journalist. Between 1999 and 2001 she was the press secretary to William Hague, the then leader of the British Conservative Party.[3] She is currently based in the UK.

Amanda Platell
In 2017 at a London Press Club event
Amanda Jane Platell

(1957-11-12) 12 November 1957
OccupationJournalist and television presenter
Spouse(s)John Chenery (div)[1]

Personal life

Platell was born in Perth, Western Australia.[1] Her father was a journalist working for The West Australian newspaper and her mother was a secretary. Platell graduated with an Honours Degree in Politics and Philosophy from the University of Western Australia,[1] her first job was in 1978 when she joined the Perth Daily News.[4]

She has lamented that for medical reasons she has been unable to have children.[5]

Early British career

After a backpacking tour of the world with her then fiancé John Chenery, she arrived in London in 1985.[1] Aiming to earn enough money to return home she worked as a freelancer for publications including The Observer and the Sunday Express.[4]

After being part of the start-up team of Today,[1] she then joined Robert Maxwell's short-lived London Daily News,[1] before returning under Today editor David Montgomery in 1987 as deputy editor.[4] In 1993 she was appointed managing editor of the Mirror Group, and then moved in the same year to The Independent, initially as marketing director and then managing director.[4]

In 1996 she joined the Sunday Mirror as acting editor, where she was the superior of Labour party's later director of communications, Alastair Campbell. In 1998 she was appointed acting editor of the Sunday Express, a position she was sacked from by Rosie Boycott following the publication of details of Peter Mandelson's gay relationship with his Brazilian partner.[1]

In 1999, Platell published a novel Scandal, about women in the newspaper industry. "Two editors, one paper, may the best woman win" was how the cover summarised the plot.[6]

It was from 1999 to 2001 that Platell moved into politics to become the Conservative Party's head of media, during which she supported William Hague, advising him to just "be yourself" as it was at these times he was his strongest. In her role, Platell made an important contribution to Hague's reversion from a modernising agenda to a 'core vote' strategy pursued during the 1999 European Elections, which the Conservatives won, and the 2001 General Election campaign. Hague, however, only managed to make a net gain of 1 seat in 2001, forcing his resignation shortly after the General Election.

Later media career

Since 2002, Platell has contributed as a freelancer to the Daily Mail, her spiritual home.[4]

On 21 November 2011, at the Leveson Inquiry into the culture, practice and ethics of the British press, Hugh Grant accused Platell of a "hatchet job" on his recent fatherhood following an article she wrote for the Daily Mail.[7][8]

She has written articles calling for greater restrictions on Internet pornography.[9]

Platell regularly reviews the Sunday newspapers on The Andrew Marr Show.



  1. Anne McElvoy (27 March 1999). "Amanda Platell, Conservative Party Press Secretary: The new woman in Hague's life". The Independent. London. Retrieved 26 June 2013.
  2. Companies House
  3. "Key Hague aide Platell resigns". BBC News.
  4. Morris, Sophie (7 April 2008). "My Life in Media: Amanda Platell". The Independent. London.
  5. "AMANDA PLATELL: I endured the trauma of IVF. Giving it to the over-40s on the NHS isn't just wasteful... it's cruel".
  6. Amanda Platell (1999), Scandal, Piatkus
  7. Supplemental Witness Statement of Hugh Grant.
  8. "'Hatchet job': Hugh Grant's OTHER claim against the Mail", The Week (22 November 2011). Retrieved on 25 January 2013.
  9. Daily Mail defends anti-porn crusade at Google's Big Tent Archived 15 April 2016 at the Wayback Machine, Wired, 24 May 2012
Media offices
Preceded by
Jonathan Holborow
Deputy Editor of Today
Succeeded by
Preceded by
Tessa Hilton
Acting Editor of the Sunday Mirror
Succeeded by
Bridget Rowe
Preceded by
Richard Addis
Editor of the Sunday Express
Succeeded by
Michael Pilgrim
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