Dick Clements 1928-2006

Richard Clements, who has died aged 78 after a long struggle with Parkinson’s disease, was a leading figure in the campaign against Britain’s atomic weapons during his 21-year editorship of the leftwing weekly newspaper, Tribune.

After a brief spell at the London School of Economics, he got his first job on a weekly in 1949. Then, after trying to start a leftwing paper of his own, he became editor of the Labour party’s youth paper, Socialist Advance. His next stop was the Daily Herald, before joining the Tribune in 1956. Five years later, at the age of 33, he took the editor’s chair. Dick’s tricky task was to balance the mundane need for cash against the loftier demands of his paper’s integrity. He did this partly by writing a lot himself, but most of all by his simple, good humoured decency. People did things for him because they liked him.
After Tribune, he first became an adviser to his old friend Foot and then office manager to Kinnock. He ended his career as director of the Citizen’s Income Trust.

He is survived by his two sons, Robert and Nicholas, and by his wife Bridget, whose support throughout their 54-year marriage made his career possible. She is a granddaughter of Ramsay MacDonald.

Richard Harry Clements, journalist, born October 11 1928; died November 23 2006