How do you get in Number Ten long after your mates have left the building?
Simple, according to one senior PR man.
‘I can get in to Downing Street,’ the well-known Tory figure told a room of fellow lobbyists this afternoon. ‘Even when Gordon Brown was in power, I could get in to Downing Street – because the doormen know me.’
So that’s what they mean by getting access. Just don’t tell Ed Balls…
And with that, this blog is now taking a break for a few days. Blogging is now temporarily suspended while I lie on a beach…
As lobbying firms continue to feel their way around the coalition, the latest member of Clegg’s mob to jump ship is the party’s education adviser Sam Cannicott. He takes up a post at Champollion – just weeks after the agency’s rather impressive capture of top BBC hack Kim Catcheside.
The news comes as Edelman promotes former Lib Dem aide Jamie Lundie to joint MD of its lobbying practice.
Meanwhile, at a bash thrown this week by lobbying firm Interel Consulting, the star speaker was… a certain Paddy Ashdown.
Martin LeJeune, former head of public affairs at Sky, now a director at the Open Road agency, tweets in a rage:
‘Would love to eviscerate the blond posh spazz chatting moronically in the seat next to me on the train. With a blunt pair of shears, ideally.’
Is that any way to talk about the Mayor of London?
Before becoming a lobbyist, LeJeune spent over a decade in the civil service. Obviously.
As the Labour mayoral battle between Ken and Oona rumbles on, how nice to see the Blairites at the Progress pressure group putting their tribalism aside and keeping an ‘open mind’ about who should be Labour’s official candidate.
‘We retain an open mind…’ states an editorial in the latest edition of its magazine for right-leaning Labour sorts. ‘We’ll make our preference clear in the next issue.’
But upon closer reading, New Labour types unable to wait until August may be able to glean some clues as to who is the chosen one.
The editorial calls for the candidate to be someone ‘does not view the election simply as an opportunity to settle unresolved scores from two years ago’.
Whoever could they mean?
Given that the same magazine also has a rather flattering cover feature on Oona, it might not be too cynical to suggest that Progress has already made its mind up on this one.
Until a few weeks ago, John Waples was the business editor of the Sunday Times. These days he is a big cheese at FD, the City PR and lobbying firm.
In a profile published this week, Waples tells my colleague of the last time he thought about switching jobs.
Nils Pratley, now The Guardian’s financial editor but then editor of the Sunday Business, had excitedly emailed his staff to tell them he had hired Waples, only to follow it up with another email the next day – after Waples changed his mind:
‘Just to let you know, we’re not hiring John Waples. John Waples is a c***.’
Apparently the two men have now kissed and made up.