Terry and Tricia Jones remember their friend and mentor Tony Elliott
i-D’s founders on the man who helped the magazine flourish and grow.
Photography courtesy of Janey Elliot.
It is with something bordering on disbelief that we find ourselves writing a public thank you to someone who for the past 35 years has played such an important part in our lives.
Tony Elliott, who died last Friday afternoon, July 17th, after a long, brave and determined battle with cancer, was one of our dearest friends, our business partner for many years and an experienced media mentor without whom, it's no exaggeration to say, i-D would probably not have survived.
Tony brought a financial structure and business plan to a couple of creative hippies who originally had no plans to own a magazine at all! However, steered by him, yearly budgets (that had to be passed by Time Out's financial team) and serious monthly management meetings became a part of our lives and allowed i-D to flourish and grow over the years.
At the beginning Tony owned 51% to our 49% shares, but he never once challenged or changed Terry's choice of cover or the creative decisions he would take. Indeed the creative freedom within our business partnership was always something we hugely valued, but was probably quite unusual.
It was only at the beginning of the 2000s, and after and a couple of house remortgaging deals with our bank manager over the years, that we felt confident and grown up enough to offer to buy back the crucial 1% or 2% -- when Tony with huge generosity offered to give them to us if we could achieve a number of financial goals he would set.
Two years later Tony, ever a man of his word, with no cost to us, signed over the crucial 2%! Tony was a huge supporter of the Arts who always encouraged the youngs who came to him for advice -- in the days before LinkedIn, Instagram and Facebook his address book and personal Filofax were invaluable!
He was also one of the founding members of Human Rights Watch in the UK and gave his time to many committees and new ventures -- The Round House & Somerset House, to name just a few.
He was a super generous networker and loved putting people he respected together when he knew they would like and could help each other.
All in all dear Tony... a life well lived and a legacy to be proud of indeed! We are honoured to have been a very small step on that journey -- we thank you a million -- and will never forget.
Much love, Tricia & Terry Jones xxx.