Back Issues 08.07.05

JULY 1985

BY JON SLATTERY 

Jane Reed joins Shah’s Today

The hot news was that Jane Reed was leaving IPC, where she had
edited Woman’s Own and been editor-in-chief of Woman, to join Eddy
Shah’s planned new daily, Today. Editor Brian MacArthur had lined Reed
up to be features editor.

Another recruit was Ron Morgans, picture editor of the Mirror.
Elsewhere in Fleet Street, Shah’s plans were not being well received.
Derek Jameson, in his Press Gazette column, quoted a union member whose
job it was to wrap up bundles of newspapers in the small hours on Fleet
Street. “Does Shah think we are going to stand here and see our lives
smashed up? Okay, we know they’re fat jobs and cushy with it. And
there’s fiddles everywhere. That’s the system. It’s always been like
that. How would you feel if you had children growing up and this bloke
comes along with his fancy equipment ready to put you on the stones? I
know the bosses have got the wind up. They have this idea of moving
everybody out, going to the Docklands and the rest of it. Who wants to
go there? It’s like the bleeding desert.”

Industrial action costs Guardian dear

One of the reasons papers wanted to get out of Fleet Street was
clear with this splash about The Guardian crippled by industrial action
by members of the NGA print union.

Sales halved and The Guardian appeared with no pictures. Editor Peter Preston said his paper had been “maimed and degraded”.

Wilson predicts autumn launch for Murdoch’s Post

Editorial director Charles Wilson was predicting an autumn launch
for Rupert Murdoch’s new London Post, his planned rival to the Evening
Standard.

He had announced that David Banks was leaving The Sun to join the
new venture as assistant editor (production). In the end the paper
never saw the light of day as its production offices were taken over by
other News International titles in the escape to Wapping. Some have
always claimed the paper was a cover for the setting up of a production
unit outside the grip of the Fleet Street print unions. Others say,
however, that it would have launched if the unions had not been so
intransigent about new technology forcing papers to abandon Fleet
Street.

The Sun rapped for buying Kray wedding story

The Press Council had criticised The Sun for buying up the story of
Ronnie Kray’s wedding in Broadmoor for £20,000. Editor Kelvin MacKenzie
defended the story as “a bizarre love story” rather than Kray cashing
in on his criminal past with tales of murders and robberies. But the
Press Council ruled the payment – split between a freelance and Kray’s
fianc̩e Рbreached its rules on not paying criminals and their
associates for stories.

Fair hearing for Live Aid?

Not all
journalists were enchanted by the Live Aid concert at Wembley. The
Guardian’s Terry Coleman (left) described it as “the biggest pop
concert in ballyhoo… the hopeless and daft nobility of it… impossible
to hear a word sung or spoken… often a shambles.” The Sun pop columnist
Jonathan King also had a go – describing Live Aid as “one of the worst
shows I’ve ever seen”.

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