Wednesday, November 12, 2014


Terrence Rathbone, Sr. made his first million pounds by the time he was 21.  One secret to his accumulation of wealth was that he was a penny-pincher and not above filching even the little things - like cigarettes - to save himself a farthing.  Because of his acumen in business, Rathbone was awarded a life peerage. 

Once he was 21, Lord Rathbone had also become a father, giving his Christian name of Terrence to his son.  By his teens, young Master Terrence preferred to be known as Twiggy to give himself a separate identity from his father.  (Being the third Thomas O'Brien in my family tree, I know that feeling well.)

In 1967, Lord Rathbone was blackmailed with simulated death scenarios into surrendering £1,000,000 or the next time it would be the real thing.  Unlike some others faced with the same choice, Rathbone survived, but to lose that much money nearly killed him as he tossed it off the bridge as instructed.

As it was a life peerage, Twiggy Rathbone couldn't inherit his father's title.  However, he also had the drive to build his own empire, mostly in media outlets, And so Rathouse Ltd. was formed, which created a lot of revenue for the Crown.  And so Terrence "Twiggy" Rathbone, Jr.  was made a Lord as well.  

It was through Rathouse, Ltd. that the new Lord Rathbone bought the Crucible newspaper and then hired his identical cousin Russell Spam to be its managing editor.  Together they changed the Crucible overnight - from a sensible (albeit dull) newspaper into a radically conservative tabloid which asked the tough questions, like "Should rapists be castrated at birth?"

The first Lord Rathbone died just before the dawn of the new Millennium, but Lord Twiggy Rathbone yet lives....

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