Scoop for Dempster
The Daily Mail’s Nigel Dempster was celebrating a terrific scoop. He had predicted in his column of 17 December 1975 that Prime Minister Harold Wilson was to stand down in the New Year and would be replaced by Foreign Secretary James Callaghan. When the scoop was confirmed in March 1976 and Wilson went, Press Gazette said of Dempster: "Rarely has there been such news justification for crowing, because he has been alone with his scoop since 17 December."
FT fails to come out after dispute
The Financial Times failed to appear after printers refused to set a paragraph on the Royal Commission on the Press’s interim report, which concerned compositors’ pay. The paragraph had noted "that in a survey of Fleet Street earnings, the report states that the average earnings for one group of members of the National Graphical Association, the craft union, at one newspaper, were as high as £12,500 a year." Press Gazette said the action had immediately identified the FT comps as being among the £12,000 a year printers listed anonymously in the commission’s report.
Oakley moves up at YP
A heavily bearded Chris Oakley, in the days before he became a newspaper mogul, had been appointed assistant editor of the Yorkshire Post.
Oakley, then 34, joined the YP from its sister paper, the Yorkshire Evening Post, where he had been on the production team for five years. He began his career with the Kent and Sussex Courier Group at Sevenoaks. Oakley went on to edit the Liverpool Echo and was a member of the management buy-out team at the Birmingham Post and Mail. He then founded Regional Independent Media, which ended up owning the Yorkshire Post. RIM was eventually sold to Johnston Press.
Hippy sect protest fails
The Press Council rejected a complaint by the International Society for Krishna Consciousness against The Sun for describing it as the "flowers and incense hippy religion". The Council ruled that although the description was flippant, it was not derogatory in modern terms and was "within the limits of acceptable comment".
Mirror hits out at Rees-Mogg
The Daily Mirror hit back at The Times for criticising it and three other nationals — the Daily Mail, the Daily Express and The Guardian — for publishing a PA picture of Lord George-Brown’s resignation night tumble outside the Palace of Westminster. The Mirror described The Times’s suggestion that Lord George-Brown drunk was a better man than Harold Wilson sober, as "the most astounding, prejudiced and intemperate judgment of the nine years’
editorship of William Rees-Mogg". The Mirror added: "Lord George- Brown only over-balanced temporarily. The reaction of The Times suggested a more serious and permanent loss of balance."
David Mannion for ATV
David Mannion, now editor-in-chief of ITV News, was about to start working for the ATV Today team in Birmingham. Press Gazette’s ‘Changing faces and places’ column noted that he was at Radio Trent after working for the Raymond’s news agency and the Long Eaton Advertiser. Another now well-known journalist featured in the same column was Ian Hargreaves, who was joining the Financial Times from the Telegraph and Argus, Bradford. Hargreaves went on work for the BBC and to edit The Independent.