Roland Gribben, who died on Friday aged 86, was 1 of the most accomplished company journalists of his generation, a relentlessly tricky-working and decent man who was nearly universally respected, and from time to time feared, among the industrialists he wrote about for his consummate professionalism and perseverance to fair, incisive and precise reporting.
Baron Simon of Highbury, a former main executive and chairman of BP as nicely as a federal government minister, reported: “He had a unique skill to electrify the dullest of firm press conferences with a 5-barrelled opening question that beautifully anticipated every little thing anyone else may want to inquire. He was 1 of the most astute reporters of his company generation, who often seemed to know as a lot about the corporations he lined as the people who ran them.”
Similarly effusive in his praise is Sir Max Hastings, editor of The Everyday Telegraph from 1986 to 1996. “Roly was a supreme specialist of incredible integrity. Those words and phrases could seem banal, until we consider how reasonably couple journalists of any sort, and specially company journalists, merit the similar accolade,” he reported.
“He was boundlessly painstaking, drily humorous, sceptical, immensely educated about British company, sincerely outraged by wrongdoing of any sort. If it was feasible to place Roly’s characteristics in a bottle and market them to aspiring media editors, they would signify every little thing we need to glance for in the incredibly best of British journalism.”
Charles Moore, who succeeded Sir Max, reported Gribben merged specialist resolve with gentlemanly manners.
“He had the great items of lucid clarification and a feeling of the place the genuine story lay. Though he took immense pleasure in his perform, he never ever let ego get in the way. As befitted a man who lined market, Roly was immensely industrious. His stories could constantly be reliable, which is genuinely the greatest praise.”
In a occupation spanning a lot more than sixty many years, the great bulk of it at The Everyday Telegraph, Gribben chronicled quite a few of the great industrial and company stories of the article-war period of time, from the decline of Britain’s vehicle market to the increase of the North Sea oil and fuel sector.