David Astor

David Astor and his father made over their ownership of the Observer, in 1945, to a trust which was intended to safeguard its independence. The trust controlled the paper’s affairs until it had to be sold in 1977 to Atlantic Richfield. Mr Astor edited the paper from 1948 to 1976. He recently celebrated his 70th birthday.

Owners and Editors

David Astor, 15 April 1982

The sight of the last editor of the Times leaving his job was disconcerting. Why was he going after only a year? Was it political disagreement? Or to do with overspending? Or with the style of the paper? Why had he not appealed to the ‘independent national directors’ introduced to arbitrate in such matters? There was no explanation. But, whatever was happening, the position of editor of the Times, as well as Mr Harold Evans personally, was taking a knock.

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