Richard Ingrams: Ian Hislop has been Eye editor for ‘too long’

Private Eye co-founder Richard Ingrams believes Ian Hislop has been editor of the magazine for “too long”.

This was Ingrams’ response when asked how long his successor had been in the editor’s chair at the title.

Ingrams, who appointed a 26-year-old Hislop as editor when he stepped down in 1986, told Press Gazette he admires what Hislop has done at the Eye but that he is a “great believer in resigning”.

“I think the danger of him staying on is that the options become less and less and less,” he said. “He should at least now be thinking, ‘who is going to take over?’”

Ingrams co-founded the Eye in 1961 before taking over its editorship in 1963. While Hislop has been editor for 26 years, Ingrams stepped down after 23.

In 1992 Ingrams founded The Oldie magazine, which he still edits, though he remained chairman of Private Eye until the beginning of 2012, when he “gave up”.

Despite having no official link to the title any longer, Ingrams often sees Hislop and does “occasionally bug him and ask him” when he plans to step down.

He also suggested that it might be time for Hislop to start looking elsewhere on television.“I can’t understand how anyone can go on being on Have I Got News For You for so long,” he said.

“I would be sick of it after about ten years. I’d get up and do something else. But he can do it. He can remain fresh on that. I couldn’t do it at all.”

Private Eye’s average fortnightly sale of 224,796 makes it the UK’s most popular news magazine.

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