Michael Crick

Michael Crick (born 21 May 1958) is an English journalist, author and broadcaster.

Born in Northampton, he was educated at Manchester Grammar School and New College, Oxford, where he got a first class degree in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE). At Oxford he was editor of one of the student newspapers, Cherwell, founded the Oxford Handbook and the Oxbridge Careers Handbook, and was president of the Oxford Union.

He specialises in politics, and appeared as a regular reporter on BBC Two's Newsnight. In March 2007, he was appointed the programme's political editor.

In 2003, under heavy pressure from the preparation of the Hutton Report, it refused to show Crick's report for Newsnight into 'Betsygate', the alleged misuse of public funds by the private office of former Conservative Party leader Iain Duncan Smith and supposed payments to his wife Betsy for work she did not do. Crick referred the case to the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards Sir Philip Mawer and the Duncan Smiths were cleared of any impropriety.

In the 2005 general election, it was observed that the five most terrifying words in the political lexicon were "Michael Crick is in reception".

He has also reported for Channel 4 News and Panorama, and has appeared on Have I Got News For You. He is known as the unofficial biographer and nemesis of Jeffrey Archer. Margaret Crick, his estranged wife, published a biography of Archer's wife Mary in 2005.

A keen supporter of Manchester United, he has written several books on the team as well as his literary political works. In 1998-99 he was the organiser of the Shareholders United Against Murdoch campaign which successfully opposed BSkyB's proposed takeover of United. He later served as Vice-Chairman of Shareholders United.

He lives with his partner Lucy Hetherington and they have a baby girl called Isabel. He also has an older daughter from his previous marriage. On 24 February 2008, the News of the World newspaper reported that he had a six month affair with Jeanette Eccles a former BBC researcher. The paper ridiculed Crick for presenting himself as moral crusader, while his own behaviour had been unethical. He was also criticised for trying to prevent the publication of the story on the grounds of privacy, while he making a living from exposing the wrong doings of others.

Crick, a known Labour supporter, is known for his investigations of Conservative politicians and followed then Tory leader, Michael Howard around during the 2005 election campaign as part of his research for his biography of Howard, published the same year. Since then, Crick has investigated Conservative Party Chairman, Caroline Spelman for abuse of expenses.

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