From the ar­chive

A look back at the Ob­server Magazine’s past

The Observer Magazine - - Up Front - Emma Cook

For the Ob­server Magazine cover story of 26 May 1991, Emma Soames, grand­daugh­ter of Win­ston Churchill and one time ed­i­tor of Tatler and Saga , turns her at­ten­tion to the Euro Hunk, a small but highly de­sir­able de­mo­graphic.

‘These men have ev­ery­thing go­ing for them but a wife. They re­gard the whole of Europe as their play­ground,’ says Soames. ‘Un­like many Bri­tish bach­e­lors who re­gard the op­po­site sex as a nec­es­sary but tire­some en­cum­brance, these young Eu­ro­pean bach­e­lors have been brought up to en­joy the com­pany of women from an early age since, hap­pily the prin­ci­ple of sin­gle-sex pub­lic schools and cold show­ers didn’t travel well out­side the con­fines of the Bri­tish Isles.’

So far, so pro-Europe. As Soames writes: ‘Some of them are work­ing for big Eu­ro­pean con­glom­er­ates, oth­ers stand to in­herit one. So why mess with a ris­ing young ex­ec­u­tive at Ford when you could be dat­ing an Agnelli?’ Meet ‘Euro Honey­pot’ Hu­ber­tus von Ho­hen­lohe, a dead­ringer for Steve Coogan’s Tony Fer­rino, pic­tured in the magazine bare chested, a gold chain nestling in his chest hair. ‘Hubsi to his enor­mous cir­cle of friends, he has a siz­zling, truly Eu­ro­pean back­ground,’ says Soames. ‘Wildly glam­orous, he skis like a dream...’ The story re­vealed much about an is­sue that, even then, was eat­ing away at us. We’d been in the Com­mon Mar­ket for 18 years and re­sent­ment was grow­ing. ‘With its stul­ti­fied bu­reau­cracy, its crazy reg­u­la­tion and its sin­gu­lar lack of unity, Europe can hardly be de­scribed as the sex­i­est sub­ject on the agenda for the 90s,’ says Soames. But she had spot­ted a sil­ver lin­ing.

‘Brus­sels hasn’t got around to pass­ing leg­is­la­tion on el­i­gi­ble men, but it is an area which could prove to be one of the Com­mu­nity’s big­gest and most vis­i­ble as­sets.’ If only they’d lis­tened, the sin­gle mar­ket could have had a whole new mean­ing.

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