Stanley Johnson enjoyed ‘wonderful footage’ of Boris dangling from zip wire

17:00 03 December 2012

Stanley Johnson praised the "wonderful footage" of son Boris dangling from a zip wire during the Olympics. Picture: Nigel Sutton.

Stanley Johnson praised the "wonderful footage" of son Boris dangling from a zip wire during the Olympics. Picture: Nigel Sutton.

© Nigel Sutton email

Stanley Johnson, 72, noted author and father of London Mayor Boris Johnson, spoke to the Ham&High as the face of this week’s Who’s Who section in the newspaper. His latest book Where the Wild Things Were: Travels of a Conservationist was named Lonely Planet’s book of the month for November.

What brought you to Regent’s Park to live?

We used to live in the Rocking Horse House on Primrose Hill but a few years ago we decided to “downsize” to a smaller house but with a bigger garden! But we still live within striking distance of Lemonia!

What would your perfect day consist of?

I’ve just been in Samarkand and Bokhara on a journalistic assignment, so I’ll settle for the Persian poet Omar Khayyam’s summary of the perfect day (as translated by Edward FitzGerald): A Book of Verses underneath the Bough, A Jug of Wine, a Loaf of Bread – and Thou, Beside me singing in the Wilderness – O, Wilderness were Paradise enow!

A film is set to be made about your life, who would you choose to play you and why?

To paraphrase Boris, the likelihood of this happening is smaller than the chance of my being reincarnated as an olive!

Who is the most inspiring person you have ever met?

The Rev. David Sheppard. He captained England at cricket, ran the Mayflower Family Centre in Canning Town and went on to become Bishop of Liverpool. Once, when Sheppard dropped a catch at first slip in a Test match when Fred Trueman was bowling, Trueman complained “I wish the Rev Sheppard could keep his hands together on, as well as off, the field!”

You are hosting a fantasy dinner party at home and can invite any three guests, dead or alive. Who would you invite?

Well, of course, I’d invite my mother, who died in 1987 aged 80. Then I’d invite my two sisters (one lives in Australia but I’d get her over for the evening). And maybe, as on Desert Island discs, I’d be allowed a bonus guest. In which case I’d invite my mother’s favourite dog, a yellow Labrador, called Leader. Actually, my mother was convinced she would join her dogs in the next life, so maybe she and Leader have already met up.

Do you have plans to write a new book in the near future?

I am working on a new novel at the moment but am also busy promoting my latest non-fiction book about endangered animals. Thanks to all who came to my talk about the book last month at the Primrose Hill Library!

What was your reaction when you saw the footage of Boris dangling from the zip wire during the Olympics?

Wonderful footage! Give the PR people at City Hall a raise!

Stanley Johnson was in conversation with Tim Lamden.


Latest News Stories

Kato Harris will appear at Isleworth Crown Court next Tuesday

This is the first picture of teacher Kato Harris who has appeared in court accused of repeatedly raping an underage girl.

Actresses Juliet Stevenson and Michelle Collins with volunteers and Alexandra's mum Lindsey Wylie from the Alexandra Wylie Tower Foundation (AWTF) launch the Christmas food parcel appeal. Picture: Polly Hancock

A charity is marking the fifth anniversary of a Highgate schoolgirl’s death from cancer with the launch of a Christmas appeal to help children left without support following the closure of Kids Company.

Victims of the contaminated blood scandal: (left) Nick Hirsch, (right, from top) Clair Walton and her late husband, Colette Wintle and Mark Ward

Timetable for settlement on NHS scandal has slipped yet again say campaigners - as they wait to see if cash is allocated in chancellor’s autumn spending review

The London Fire Brigade has put forward proposals to axe 13 fire engines to save £11million

‘While a new website would be welcome, this should not be done at the cost of frontline cuts’ says fire resources committee chief

Yesterday, 18:01
Khayerul Miah, pictured, and his brother have joined IS in Syria

The two young men from Kentish Town who left the UK to fight for Islamic State (IS) in Syria are former pupils of Acland Burghley School.

Yesterday, 16:46
The government says the HPV vaccine is safe and will protect against deaths from cervical cancer

East Finchley mother accuses pharmaceutical industry and government of ‘ignoring generation of sick girls’ as European Medicines Agency finds no link between illnesses and cervical cancer jab

Yesterday, 15:58
Carl Ryan, who is charged with misconduct in a public office, outside court (Picture: Central News)

A detective who faked records - including witness statements by Whittington Hospital staff - thwarted three investigations into serious sex assaults, a court heard.

Yesterday, 12:18
Firefighters from West Hampstead were called to tackle the large blaze in Finchley Road - which burned for 72 hours

West Hampstead and Hornsey fire stations could both lose an engine under controversial cost-cutting proposals

Most read news

Property Newsletter Sign-up

Get the latest North London property news and features straight to your inbox with our regular newsletter

I am also happy to receive other emails...
Fields marked with a * are mandatory
Email Marketing by e-shot


Tesco - Every little helps

Would you like to have the opportunity to win a huge £2,500 to spend at Tesco? Well with this amazing prize you can do exactly that! MyOffers are giving you the chance to get your hands on £2,500 to spend on anything you desire may it be free weekly groceries for the foreseeable future, a new TV, home decoration or even a new sofa!

You could get your hands on the new Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge!

Here’s your chance to win one of the most feature-packed smartphones on the planet, from tech giants Samsung, The Samsung S6 Edge!

Digital Edition

Read the Hampstead & Highgate Express e-edition today E-edition
Family Notices 24

Local business directory

Our trusted business finder