Friends, family and Fleet Street gather to remember Dennis Griffiths

More than 30 London Press Club members, directors and family attended the dedication of a plaque to the memory of former club chairman Dennis Griffiths at St Bride’s Church last Thursday 28 April.

The ceremony was followed by a reception in the Johnson Room of The Cheshire Cheese in Fleet Street.

The plaque was a poignant tribute as Dennis Griffiths was the organiser of a major Fleet Street memorial exhibition which Prince Charles then opened with a commemorative plaque at St Bride’s. 

 Dennis’s widow Mrs Liz Griffiths and his son Mark and daughter in law, were present at both the church and The Cheshire Cheese as were Press Club directors and former board members including Carole Stone, Martyn Bond, Bill Hagerty, David Selves, George Westropp and current chairman Doug Wills.

The plaque on the pew at St Bride’s reads ‘Dennis Griffiths    8 December 1933 – 24 December 2015 Newspaper director, Historian, London Press Club chairman.’

The dedication ceremony was conducted by the rector of St Bride’s the Rev Canon Alison Joyce.

Speaking at the reception, former club chairman George Westropp said Many evenings in some of Fleet Street’s better pubs, I have sat opposite my good friend Dennis and listened rapt to his tales of his adventures, triumphs – and less so – of his many years battling his way up the greasy pole that is the newspaper industry. What a wonderful career.

Dennis retired in his late 50s to concentrate on writing about the history of Fleet Street. His Encyclopaedia of the British Press was ground breakingPlant Here The Standard – about his beloved Evening Standard – was much praised and Fleet Street –  Five Hundred Years of the Press led to an exhibition. His last book Blum & Taff was regarded as a scholarly triumph.

Dennis is particularly remembered for being the inspiration and organiser of the 300 years celebration in 2002 at St Bride’s of the publication of the first daily newspaper the Daily Courant. 

Before his retirement his executive posts in Fleet Street including as Production Director of the Evening Standard. 

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