Mary Wakefield rssMry_Wakefield

Mary Wakefield is deputy editor of The Spectator.


Crime's falling, but we still hate the police. What's going on?

12 April 2014

One fine morning early this year I had tea with Stephen Greenhalgh, Boris’s pleasant if perspiring deputy mayor for policing, and discussed the two great crime mysteries of the 21st… Read more

Hugh Grant: the master of bogus self deprecation  Photo: Getty Images.

In defence of self-deprecation

29 March 2014

I think the ancient English art of self–deprecation may be dying. I don’t mean self-deprecation in its distorted and most exported form: pug-eyed rogues like Hugh Grant getting away with… Read more

Marte Armitage's ‘Cobweb’ in turquoise and taupe, available at Hamilton Weston

I never thought I'd write about wallpaper. But I'd never seen wallpaper like Marthe Armitage's

22 March 2014

Every night, while my husband reads by screen-light, my mind runs like an invisible rat two miles north to the house we’re rebuilding in Islington. And there it scurries from… Read more

David Cameron addresses the crowds in Benghazi Photo: Getty

Libya is imploding. Why doesn't David Cameron care?

15 March 2014

A few days ago I went to a talk about Syria; one of those events for the concerned layman, in which a panel of experts give a briefing. Everything sounded… Read more


Would you let parents destroy ‘gay’ embryos?

1 March 2014

Because I’d like to have a child, and I’m getting on a bit, my husband and I have spent time recently with consultants. They’re an odd breed with distinct and… Read more


Why did Theresa May deport my homeless friend?

15 February 2014

I’ve heard some excellent things about our Home Secretary, Theresa May. People who work in her department say she’s bright and hard-working, and that she runs around on her hamster… Read more


Hearts - the next stage of the 3D printing revolution

1 February 2014

I have seen the future — your future if you’re rich enough or brave enough to embrace it — and I have to tell you, it’s weird. Imagine this: it’s 2025… Read more

Italian priest Paolo Dall'Oglio Photo: AFP/Getty

The one man who makes me hope for peace in Syria

18 January 2014

As Syria’s second peace conference looms, and we prepare ourselves for a lot of hot air drifting over from Geneva, I’ve been making a list of those players in the… Read more


The 3D printing revolution

30 November 2013

Did you know we were in the middle of another industrial revolution? Perhaps, like me, you’ve been too busy fretting about house prices and thinking about dinner to notice. Well,… Read more

Like something out of a fairytale: Enna

Notes on…Sicily

7 September 2013

It could be, in Sicily, there comes a time when you’ve had your fill of seaside calamari and cheap white wine. The sheer thrill of lying on a beach without… Read more


Revealed: how exam results owe more to genes than teaching

27 July 2013

How pleasant it is to live in the 21st century, enlightened, no longer scared of science. We can marvel at the diversity of life with David Attenborough; face the vastness… Read more

Rough Sleeper In Oxford Street

Cold comfort

2 February 2013

  An emergency shelter funded by the Mayor of London, Boris Johnson, has been opened to offer a lifeline to rough sleepers in the capital whenever three consecutive nights of… Read more


Stop the drugs war

12 January 2013

‘They’re all bad, our politicians, all corrupt,’ said Maria, her cheery face dissolving into distaste. What about the new president, Peña Nieto? I ask. ‘That pretty boy? Ugh!’ It was… Read more

The fire next time: a protest in Sidon, southern Lebanon, following the Beirut bombing

‘Die slowly, Christian dog’

27 October 2012

There is one main road stretching north-south along the Bekaa valley between Lebanon and Syria. It runs in a beeline from the prosperous little city of Zhaleh, on through a… Read more


Mexico notebook

15 September 2012

Four a.m. Something was triggering the motion-sensor on the outside light. One minute, darkness, the next, a window-full of flailing palm leaves, bright with rain. I blinked for a bit,… Read more


‘Drone warfare is coming’

4 August 2012

Quite soon, it will be impossible to ignore the fact that a revolution is taking place. You’ll look up one day and the skies will be full of flying robots:… Read more


Is Dan the man?

7 April 2012

I first heard the name ‘Dan Jarvis’ on a dance floor at a wedding in Bath. ‘Move like Jagger’ was thumping through the speakers, and most people had given up… Read more

Mary Wakefield

18 February 2012

We are not made incrementally aware of things that happen incrementally. Though something may have been changing for a while, the realisation comes all at once in a swoop, usually… Read more

How to fix orphanages

8 October 2011

Kigali, Rwanda Madame B has dressed up for our visit. She’s sitting on a bench with her back to the orphanage wall, talking about just how much she loves each… Read more


Private passions

24 September 2011

Do you paint yourself? Or…sing in a choir maybe? John Studzinski looks at me anxiously from the other side of a conference table, in a sleek little office belonging to… Read more


Let’s bring the abortion debate to life

10 September 2011

No one ever really expected Nadine Dorries’s ill-fated abortion bill to succeed — not after the Lib Dems had made a fuss, and the PM had withdrawn his support with… Read more

Girl power

2 September 2011

In single-sex schools girls don’t see themselves through boys’ eyes, says Mary Wakefield I remember quite clearly the moment I first realised how very lucky I was to have been… Read more

When the ships come in

27 August 2011

Ullapool is always lovely, says Mary Wakefield, but one time of year is particularly special … My mother and I walk east down Argyle street, past the low stone houses, the… Read more

‘Anti-semitism is on the rise’

2 July 2011

Exactly halfway through my conversation with the Chief Rabbi, Jonathan Sacks, I had an attack of conscience, a small one, but there it was. Sacks had explained the thesis of… Read more

Harlem renaissance

23 April 2011

A massive project to change the lives of America’s poorest children It’s raining in Harlem this morning — big fat American rain tipping out of the big gray sky, sluicing… Read more