I would gladly go to prison for my convictions. It would be nice and peaceful and I could write a prison cookbook
Clarissa Dickson Wright - full name Clarissa Theresa Philomena Aileen Mary Josephine Agnes Elsie Trilby Louise Esmerelda Dickson Wright - will always be best remembered as one of the Two Fat Ladies.
Together with Jennifer Paterson, she toured the country on a vintage motorbike and sidecar, in one of the most popular cookery shows of the 1990s. Clarissa was usually packed into the sidecar with each week’s supply of fresh groceries.
The eccentric series ended with Paterson’s death in 1999. Clarissa, who was some twenty years younger than her former co-star, remained a public figure, appearing in lifestyle documentaries including Clarissa and the Countryman and becoming well known for her fearless and forthright views.
Clarissa was born to privilege. Her father had been a royal surgeon and her mother was an heiress. Having become the youngest barrister in the country at the age of 21, she inherited millions while still in her twenties.
But as she later revealed, her early life had been far from untroubled, growing up with an abusive, alcoholic father. Clarissa would later become dependent on alcohol herself, which would cost her her job, and even led to homelessness for a time.
Happily, Clarissa conquered her addictions and bounced back to enjoy unexpected late career success as a TV presenter and writer.
“People used to say, don’t you object to the title?” she said about the series Two Fat Ladies.
“And I said, well there are two of us. I had problems with ‘ladies’ because it sounds like a public convenience. But which bit do you object to? Are you saying I’m thin?”