Back Issues 19.06.03

Whale’s apology

News of the World editor Bernard Shrimsley received an apology in the High Court from Capital Radio and presenter James Whale. Shrimsley waived his right to damages.

Today gets longer

Radio 4’s Today programme was restored to its two-hour running time. Today had been cut into two 25-minute segments two years earlier. John Timson was due to return to the programme, which he had left 18 months earlier for BBC TV’s Tonight. He was to co-present with Brian Redhead.

Graf-ting at an early age

Philip Graf had been appointed group circulation marketing controller of Thomson Regional Newspapers, aged 31. He went on to head Trinity which took over most of TRN before merging with Mirror Newspapers.

David forced to chipp in

NUJ members at PA were working to rule in a dispute about pay. Mandatory NUJ meetings meant editor-in-chief David Chipp was having to step in with other executives to handle copy. The chapel was seeking rises of between £1,700 and £2,000-a-year to bring its average £5,800-salaries into line with national newspaper colleagues.

Fleet street re-joyces

The “Mormon in Chains” Joyce McKinney story was titillating tabloid readers in the UK but not getting any play in the US, according to Press Gazette’s New York correspondent Jeffrey Blyth. McKinney was the Mormon sex queen who became infatuated with another member of the church, Kirk Anderson. She followed him to London, kidnapped him and kept him captive, chained to a bed. The affair resulted in a court case which was a tabloid dream. McKinney said: “I loved Kirk so much that I would have skied down Mount Everest in the nude with a carnation up my nose.” But one US editor said of the Mirror’s coverage: “We would never get away with anything like that. We would be thrown out of the supermarkets.” Blyth noted: “There is sometimes a sanctimoniousness in the US press about such stories.”

lThe full story of McKinney and the manacled Mormon was told in a book by Anthony Delano.

Howzat! for hard Times

Ouch! Things got rough when The Observer and The Sunday Times clashed in their annual cricket match. The Observer’s home editor, Bob Chesshyre, was knocked out when he edged a ball on to his face during his innings. Chesshyre was cut and bruised. The match claimed another casualty in the form of Sunday Times writer Peter Watson, who broke his leg while bowling. For the record, The Sunday Times won by 54 runs.

Bookies could not welch

Leicester Mercury sports editor David Welch was giving the bookies a hammering with his spot on racing tips. He told readers that he thought the Grand National could be a dead heat between Lucius and Sebastian and advised his readers to back both nags. They finished first and second at 14-1 and 25-1, and only inches separated them. He had also correctly tipped Shirley Heights to win the Derby at 8-1. One local bookmaker moaned: “This is the worst result we have experienced since Mr Welch tipped the winner of the 1974 Derby, Snow Knight.”

Mirror raid

Raiders shot and killed a security guard and stole nearly £200,000 from the Daily Mirror offices in London. The raiders had disguised themselves as printers in boiler suits. The murdered guard, Tony Castro, was supervising the unloading of the cash by security guards when he was shot.

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