Sunday 11 December 2016

'Josephine has been with me for 33 years, for the last two of them, she's been dead'

Writer Josephine Hart died from cancer two years ago. Her husband Maurice Saatchi still remains as devoted to his wife as ever

George Lee

Published 13/10/2013 | 05:00

Josephine Hart with husband Maurice Saatchi, who takes breakfast by her tomb nearly every day.
Josephine Hart with husband Maurice Saatchi, who takes breakfast by her tomb nearly every day.
Josephine Hart was diagnosed with cancer after she complained of a 'tummy ache'.
FOLLOW THE LEADER: Former British prime minister Margaret Thatcher and her successor John Major

IN a revealing and moving interview, Maurice Saatchi – brother of Charles – spoke about the love of his life, Irish writer Josephine Hart and how he has breakfast at her tomb nearly every day. Having told interviewer George Lee about his family's roots in Iraq, and how they moved to London when he was 11 months old, he then talked about the early days of Saatchi and Saatchi, and its quick growth – which he put down to "genius, brilliance, one or the other". They also spoke about advertising and politics, and the "intellectual battles" of election campaigns, before moving on to Mrs Thatcher at which point our transcript begins.

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George Lee: I wonder, was politics important in the growth of the business? Because you're clearly interested yourself, as you say, in the intellectual arguments around politics and you had some connection with Michael Heseltine from a very young age after leaving college. Was that connection important in the direction that your business took?

Maurice Saatchi: Very. And, of course, we've recently had the funeral of Margaret Thatcher and there's no doubt at all that she played a crucial part in the history of the company because when the time came to try and expand the company in America she had given us, in America certainly, the ultimate calling card, which was "Mrs Thatcher's Favourite Advertising Company", which opened every door and so, as I told her directly many times, I think it's true to say that she made us.

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