‘In 35 years reviewing for The Times,’ says Hilary Finch in the paper’s ombudsman column, ‘I’ve felt that what I’ve been paid to do is not to criticise, but to report – as succinctly and vividly as possible. And to report for a newspaper which has always thought – and I hope always will – that the remarkable things that are going on in classical music-making up and down the country is a story worth telling.’
Some may find her attitude old-fashioned in a decade when music critics seek to stoke controversy with comments about body-shape and fuel a bandwaggon for or against a second concert hall or opera house.
We find Hilary’s comments refreshing, professional and timely. Hilary has always been a trusted voice in the stalls, eminently knowledgeable, shrewd and humane in her judgements. She will file her last review at the end of his week. We wish her a very happy retirement.