Smart Spending and Smart  Saving  Tips
with  Jane  Furnival

'Queen of Thrift'  The Guardian

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Jane Furnival

The Tribble family announce with deep sadness the death, on 14 May 2012, of Jane Furnival.

UK Press Gazette

We have decided to leave this website as a tribute to her memory and to enable those who wish to obtain copies of her books.

About Jane

‘Queen of Thrift’ Jane Furnival has been widely quoted in books such as Freakonomics, and has appeared on most radio stations including BBC Radio  4, and on TV, including her own BBC-1 primetime series Smart Spenders, ITV’s Tonight with Trevor Macdonald and GMTV.   One of her articles is a set text for A-level sociology students.

Sensible, relevant, funny, entertaining, helpful and not hard to follow, Jane’s classic book Mr Thrifty’s How to Save Money on Absolutely Everything was first based on some columns she wrote in 1987 called Mr Thrifty, suggested by Richard Ingrams.

Mr Thrifty, which she thought a one-off, has bitten her on the bum ever since Pan Books phoned to commission it, unknowingly, on her wedding day.

Jane found herself trying to change out of her wedding dress into a going-away outfit with a car and new husband impatiently tooting outside the door, and a phone in the other hand, trying to talk money and deadlines in a very business-like voice.

Then Lesley O’Mara, wife of publisher Michael, bought an old copy and showed it to her cleaning lady – who also worked for Jane and introduced them.

This sparked a completely new edition, just right for the times. And it’s now gone through countless other editions.

Then BBC 1 asked Jane to present a series, Smart Spending, which she didn’t much enjoy, as she had to keep telling people off in public for over-spending, when she is in reality a rather kindly person. Also they made her wear a loathsome red suit – chosen by the director - and she tore her knee meniscus in an accident during filming.

Her time as Queen of Thrift at GMTV was more enjoyable as they actually had a make-up department – an asset when you’re starting work at 5.30am - and were warm and kind.

Other books include Smart Spending with Jane Furnival, published by Hay House Books, which she thinks her best book, and Smart Spending Tips.

A popular journalist, she has written columns for both the Daily Telegraph and the Daily Mail, and features and articles for virtually every newspaper and many magazines, including international ones.

She has also written occasional history books.   She once wrote a song for Emma Thompson to sing in cabaret and a film about elephants for the World Wildlife Fund.

Jane’s life has been one of tremendous highs and lows.   Great successes, wonderful bits of luck, and terrible times when she nearly lost everything.

She can talk about the time when she worked in advertising and was so lacking in thrift that, when asked to buy a bucket, she sent a dispatch rider to Habitat with instructions to buy a selection of colours.

She can talk about the impact on her family when, seven months’ pregnant, she was left without any pay as a freelance journalist  by the infamous Robert Maxwell, on whose newspaper The European she worked.

She can talk about ‘keeping the whole thing together’ when in middle age, and with three children, her husband Andy Tribble found himself ousted from his own business and had to re-build a life.

She has lived in a succession of interesting houses, and is currently running The Old Rectory in Cheam, Surrey, as a family home and a party and location venue.

She has three sons, aged 24, 19 and 10, a wonderful Bouvier dog called Boo, and a cat called Ella, a rescue cockerel called Winchester and four hens currently.

She has recently started giving talks on hen-keeping to groups and has had many requests for ‘your funny talk’ which she thought was quite serious!   She offered to return to one group and talk about ‘ghosts I have seen’ – only to receive an invitation to discuss ‘goats I have seen’.



This book contained the short, sharp shock I needed to change the way I was spending. It has helped me get out of debt within one year and gave me the confidence and advice I needed when speaking to nasty debt collection companies. Her amazing saving tips helped soften the blow too. Jane Furnival has a no-nonsense approach which makes everything very easy to understand and apply to your own circumstances. A book on this subject could so easily be dull and full of facts and figure but this book provides straightforward, practical advice with heaps of humour.

J. Calvert (London, UK)

An updated and cutdown version of the classic Smart Spending is available for  £6.99 in the shops, or direct from Jane here for £5.50 (inc. p& p).

How to order

Send cash or cheque payable to Thriftyworks Ltd to:

68 Kings Rd.,
GU11 3PQ

or by PayPal

From pay by credit card  to

Other books by Jane Furnival

First and foremost, the cheapest way I know to save money is to buy a copy of my book, Smart Spending with Jane Furnival, from me personally. It costs £8.99 in the shops, or buy direct for £6.75 (inc. p& p).

Jane's classic Mr. Thrifty's How to Save Money on Absolutely Everything  is still available in a limited number of copies. Price in shops: £4.99. Available direct for £4.50 (inc. p& p).

I have a few old copies of Mr. Thrifty, which I will happily sell for £3 (inc. p& p) to clear.

This light-hearted guide to gentlemen's wear is full of funny old illustrations and makes a great gift, especially for men and boys. £ 5 including p& p signed.

How to order

Send cash or cheque payable to Thriftyworks Ltd to:

The Old Rectory
15 Malden Rd.

or by PayPal

From pay by credit card  to

Don't forgot to tell us which book you want


© Copyright Estate of Jane Furnival 2014-