RICHARD BENSON is an English author, journalist and critic. He grew up on a small farm in Yorkshire, was educated at King’s College, London, and began his professional writing career as a news reporter for the Beverley Guardian, a local newspaper, in 1989.
In the 1990s he edited The Face magazine. In this period the magazine achieved record sales, won the International Magazine of the Year award, and promoted many of the emerging artists and cultural movements that became dominant in the late 1990s and 2000s. Writing and speaking about British society and popular culture in the media, he became known as “one of Britain’s leading cultural commentators” (The Guardian).
His first experience in book publishing was as editor of Night Fever, a collection of writing about nightclubs and popular culture published by Ebury in 1998. In 2005 he published his memoir The Farm, an account of his family in the aftermath of the forced sale of their farm in 1999. The book, which blended fictional and non-fictional narrative techniques, was described by Ronald Blythe as “one of the most remarkable farm books I have read… an extraordinary mixture of hardness and tenderness, wit and slog, and quite original.” It was shortlisted for The Guardian first-book award, chosen for Channel 4’s Richard and Judy’s Book Club and as a Radio 4 Book of the Week, and became a number-one bestseller.