In 1991, I was sent by The Times to interview the poet Kathleen Raine. She was a formidable, prickly character, but when we discovered we both knew Isabel Quigly, things warmed up. Isabel was then working at The Tablet, and Raine was confident that she was the best literary editor in London – “keeping up the old standards”. Whatever Isabel did, her standards were high. Sue Graham-Dixon, mother of the art historian Andrew, once told me that she couldn’t bear to throw away a letter, or even a postcard, from Isabel, because she wrote so beautifully.