Rachel Johnson

Rachel Johnson

Rachel Johnson has been a broadcast and national newspaper journalist since the age of 23 when she joined the Financial Times as the paper's first female graduate trainee.

She has her own radio show on LBC, been a reporter on BBC Radio Four, written weekly columns for national newspapers, published nine books, and is the only former editor of The Lady magazine to have entered the Big Brother House.


In 1989 Rachel joined the Financial Times as a graduate trainee writing about the economy. She spent a year on secondment to the Foreign Office Policy Planning staff before moving to the BBC for three years.

1997 saw Rachel cross the Atlantic to Washington DC where she worked as a columnist and freelancer. Rachel has written weekly columns for The Sunday Times, The Daily Telegraph, The Evening Standard and The Mail on Sunday. She’s also been published regularly in The Oldie, The Big Issue, Easy Living and She magazines.

In 2009 Rachel was appointed Editor of The Lady, a weekly magazine established in 1885. Her efforts to reinvigorate the title were the subject of a Channel 4 documentary The Lady and the Revamp. Following her departure from the title in 2012 she made a BBC Four documentary How to Be a Lady: An Elegant History.

Rachel has been a regular on shows including Question Time, Any Questions, Have I Got News For You and Sky News’ weekly debate show The Pledge. She has won two Pointless Celebrity trophies, Celebrity University Challenge and Celebrity Mastermind with the specialist subject The Laconia Incident.

In April 2020 Rachel began presenting her own Sunday night show on LBC Radio and launched a podcast, Rachel Johnson’s Difficult Women, for the station owners Global.


Edited by Rachel, The Oxford Myth, published in 1988 features chapters from alumnae describing their experiences of sex, drugs and education at Oxford University in lurid terms.

The Mummy Diaries, published in 2004, about the life of a young mother living in West London and Exmoor.

Notting Hell, Shire Hell and Fresh Hell are Rachel's trilogy focused on the life of journalist Mimi Fleming as, from 2006 to 2015, she negotiates life at the posh end of Notting Hill, a move to the country and, in the final book, Mimi’s attempt to be re-integrated into London society.

A Diary of The Lady, My First Year as Editor, published in 2010 and its sequel, A Diary of The Lady, My first Year and a Half, give Rachel’s account of her time as Editor of the world’s oldest woman’s weekly.

Winter Games, published in 2012 is a tale of secrets and betrayal set in 1930’s Bavaria and seventy years later in London.

Rake's Progress: My Political Midlife Crisis, describes Rachel’s brief experience of standing for election for Change UK in the 2019 European Parliament Elections. 

The Literary Review’s Bad Sex in Fiction Award 2008 for Shire Hell.

Personal Life

Rachel lives in Notting Hill and Exmoor with her husband and three children. 

Cookie Policy

This website uses cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website.

Learn more