Adam Boulton

Thomas Adam Babington Boulton (born 15 February 1959) is a British journalist and broadcaster who was formerly Editor-at-large of Sky News, and presenter of All Out Politics and Week In Review.[1] He is also the former political editor of Sky News. He is based at Sky News' Westminster studios in Central London. He was previously the political editor of TV-am, an ITV early-morning broadcasting franchise holder. He held the post of Sky's political editor since being asked to establish its politics team for the launch of the channel in 1989. He is the former presenter of Sky News' Sunday Live with Adam Boulton, and presented a regular weekday news and political programme on Sky News, entitled Boulton and Co from 2011 to 2014.

Adam Boulton
Adam Boulton cropped.png
Adam Boulton in March 2008
Born
Thomas Adam Babington Boulton

(1959-02-15) 15 February 1959 (age 62)
Reading, Berkshire, England
EducationChrist Church, Oxford
Johns Hopkins University
TitlePolitical Editor of Sky News (1989–2014)
Sky News Editor-at large (2014–2021)
Spouse(s)
(m. 2006)

Early life and educationEdit

Boulton, the son of pioneering anaesthetist Dr Thomas Babington Boulton OBE (1925–2016), (of a family of bank managers and clerks, but with a medical tradition on his mother's side),[2] and Helen (née Brown)[3][4][5] was educated at Tower House School, a preparatory school in south-west London, at St Andrew's School, Pangbourne, a preparatory school in Berkshire, and at Westminster School, a boarding school for boys in Westminster in Central London, where he took A-levels in English, Mathematics, Physics and Chemistry. He then studied at Christ Church, Oxford, and Johns Hopkins University where he gained degrees in English and International Relations.[6][7] In 2013 Boulton received an Honorary Doctorate of Business from Plymouth University.[8]

CareerEdit

 
Boulton speaking alongside Jon Cruddas at a Policy Exchange event in 2012

Boulton had early roles at IPS News and the BBC.[9] Before joining Sky News, he worked as a journalist in the parliamentary lobby. He was then political editor for TV-am, where his colleague was Kay Burley who later joined Sky News. It was during the 1987 general election that he was punched by Denis Healey after Anne Diamond asked Healey about his wife using private healthcare; the incident was witnessed by gossip columnist Nigel Dempster.[10]

Boulton was asked to establish the politics team for the launch of Sky News in 1989.[9] He thereby began a long tenure as political editor of the news channel.

Boulton won the Royal Television Society's supreme Judge's Award and was elected the 2007 chairman of the parliamentary lobby. On 15 June 2008 he became the first British television reporter to conduct a joint interview of US President George W. Bush and his wife Laura. Boulton was based in Washington, D.C. from January 2009, covering the first 100 days of Barack Obama's presidency for Sky News.

On 22 April 2010, during the UK general election campaign, Boulton hosted Sky News' leaders' debate live from Bristol, the second in a series of three televised debates between Gordon Brown, David Cameron and Nick Clegg produced, in turn, and on consecutive Thursdays, by ITV News, Sky News and the BBC.

 
Boulton presenting Sky News with Kay Burley in May 2010

On 10 May 2010, while covering events on the aftermath of the general election, Boulton lost his composure with former 10 Downing Street Director of Communications Alastair Campbell, defending his impartiality in a live on-air interview after Campbell accused Boulton of political bias in favour of the Conservatives. Boulton shouted at Campbell: "Don't tell me what I think".[11] At the time both Labour and the Conservatives were trying to broker a deal with the Liberal Democrats aimed at forming a coalition government. A similar disagreement occurred later on that evening in an exchange with Ben Bradshaw.[12] The media regulator Ofcom received several hundred complaints about the Campbell incident from viewers.[13] During the campaign he had been asked to calm down by Peter Mandelson when he questioned him about possible spending cuts that the Financial Times believed would have to be made following the election.[14] He was also accused of bias for the way he questioned Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg, it was claimed in contravention of the pre-established rules, during the leaders' debate hosted by Sky News. Ofcom rejected the complaints.[15] On 20 January 2011 Boulton once again interviewed Alastair Campbell on Sky News, ahead of Tony Blair's appearance in front of the Iraq Inquiry. Both apologised about the incident and shook hands at the end of the interview.

Boulton left the role of Sky News' political editor before the 2014 Scottish independence referendum[16] to become its Editor-at-large.[17] He had been political editor for 25 years and five general elections.[9] His successor in the role was Faisal Islam.[16]

Since 2017, Boulton has presented All Out Politics on Sky News, from 9 am to 11 am, Monday to Friday. He also maintains a blog on the Sky News website and presents Week in Review. Additionally, he presents a review of Prime Minister's Questions on a Wednesday evening, with regular guests to discuss the performance of ministers involved in the House of Commons earlier in the day and more seriously, the legislation and ideas that they present to the House.

He has written for newspapers and magazines including The Times, Sunday Times, Guardian, Spectator, New Statesman and Independent. He has been a guest of programmes such as Newsnight, Bremner, Bird and Fortune and Have I Got News for You. He has interviewed every British Prime Minister from David Cameron back to Sir Alec Douglas-Home.

On 10 November 2021, Boulton announced he will be leaving Sky News at the end of the year.[18] In an interview with The Times, he explained: "It looks like the direction which Sky News wants to go over the next few years is not one that's a particularly good fit for me. Sky News head John Ryley believes the future of news is digital, is on the platform for phones and is very strongly based around data journalism. At that point you do start thinking".[19]

Personal lifeEdit

Boulton divorced his first wife Kerena Anne Boulton after his affair with Tony Blair's spin doctor Anji Hunter became front page tabloid news in 2002.[20] Kerena is the sister of former Labour Minister and environmentalist Peter Mond, 4th Baron Melchett, and eldest daughter of former British Steel Corporation Chairman Julian Mond and Sonia Melchett, writer and socialite. Boulton married Hunter at St James's Church, Piccadilly on 22 July 2006.[citation needed] Both have children from their previous marriages.

He claims not to have voted for any party since becoming a journalist.[9]

BibliographyEdit

  • Tony's Ten Years: Memories of the Blair Administration (2008) Simon & Schuster
  • Hung Together: The 2010 Election and the Coalition Government with Joey Jones (2010) Simon & Schuster

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ @JayneSeckerSky (31 March 2017). "Yes. Good luck to the lovely @adamboultonSKY who taking up the #winR reins with some different guests. #allchange" (Tweet) – via Twitter.
  2. ^ "Dr Tom Boulton" – via www.thetimes.co.uk.
  3. ^ https://www.rcoa.ac.uk/lives-of-the-fellows/dr-thomas-babington-boulton
  4. ^ "Dr Thomas Boulton, pioneering anaesthetist – obituary". 13 July 2016 – via www.telegraph.co.uk.
  5. ^ "Boulton, (Thomas) Adam (Babington)". WHO'S WHO & WHO WAS WHO. doi:10.1093/ww/9780199540884.013.U246011. ISBN 978-0-19-954088-4.
  6. ^ "Adam Boulton | Sky News Press Office". skynews.skypressoffice.co.uk. Archived from the original on 5 January 2012. Retrieved 15 February 2012.
  7. ^ "Johns Hopkins SAIS | Press Room | SAIS Reports". sais-jhu.edu. Archived from the original on 2 March 2012. Retrieved 15 February 2012. Boul
  8. ^ "Archived copy". Archived from the original on 17 October 2013. Retrieved 17 October 2013.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: archived copy as title (link)
  9. ^ a b c d Paul Blanchard (25 January 2018). "Adam Boulton - Editor-at-Large, Sky News". mediamasters.fm (Podcast). Media Masters. Retrieved 2 February 2021.
  10. ^ "Sky's political editor on the channel's relaunch". The Independent. London. 6 April 2006. Archived from the original on 24 April 2010. Retrieved 10 May 2010.
  11. ^ "Video of heated exchange between Boulton and Campbell". 10 May 2010. Archived from the original on 13 May 2010. Retrieved 10 May 2010.
  12. ^ "Adam Boulton arguing with Ben Bradshaw". 10 May 2010. Archived from the original on 21 December 2021. Retrieved 10 May 2010.
  13. ^ Sweney, Mark (12 May 2010). "Adam Boulton and Kay Burley: almost 1,500 complaints to Ofcom". The Guardian. London. Archived from the original on 15 May 2010. Retrieved 13 May 2010.
  14. ^ "Labour Party election campaign coverage". Sky News. BSkyB. 27 April 2010. Archived from the original on 4 May 2010. Retrieved 13 May 2010.
  15. ^ Sweney, Mark (5 July 2010). "Ofcom rejects complaints over Sky News election coverage". The Guardian. London.
  16. ^ a b Deans, Jason (20 March 2014). "Faisal Islam replaces Adam Boulton as Sky News political editor". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 February 2021.
  17. ^ Sweney, Mark (13 January 2014). "Adam Boulton to step down as Sky News political editor". The Guardian. Retrieved 3 February 2014.
  18. ^ Waterson, Jim (10 November 2021). "Adam Boulton to leave Sky News after more than 30 years". The Guardian. Retrieved 12 November 2021.
  19. ^ Billen, Andrew (10 November 2021). "Adam Boulton on leaving Sky News: 'We baby boomers have had our day'". The Times. Retrieved 12 November 2021.
  20. ^ Chittenden, Maurice; Elliott, John (23 July 2006). "Adam and Anji's power wedding". The Sunday Times. London. Retrieved 7 May 2011.

External linksEdit

Media offices
New office Political Editor of Sky News
1989–2014
Succeeded by
Sky News Editor-at-large
2014–present
Incumbent