The mother of all Christmases
Merry Christmas? You ain’t kidding! When pregnant Newsquest reporter
Jacqui Carrol (right) felt a rumble in her stomach at the office
Christmas party, her colleagues thought she had just eaten too much
turkey. Little did they know that within a few hours she would give
birth to a bouncing baby girl – two weeks earlier than planned. Elisha
Perri Carrol made her surprise entrance into the world at 4.48am on 17
December, at the Royal Gwent Hospital in Newport. Jacqui, a reporter on
the Chepstow and Caldicot Free Press in south Wales, said: “I had been
booked into the Heath in Cardiff for a caesarean on 29 December. I was
enjoying my last night out before the baby was born and I certainly did
not expect to have her that night. I am always being accused of being a
bit dramatic and my colleagues didn’t believe me when I told them I
thought my waters had broken.” As her discomfort increased, panic set
in. A dash to the hospital ensued, where staff swiftly arranged a
Elisha weighed in at 5lb 13oz.
A charming ‘vox pop’ (top left) in the Sunday Sport purported to
tell us what ‘Nicola Alder’ from Derby enjoys getting up to in her
In fact it told us more about where the Sunday Sport pinches its
pictures from. The picture of Alder was in fact that of tragic teenager
Martha Moxley, beaten to death in Connecticut 30 years ago, and
featured on the Crimenews2000 web site (top right).
Sub loses duel of wits with brewery
Sub-editor Humphrey Evans saw a chance to benefit from his
proofreading skills when he spotted that the label on the back of a
bottle of JHB ale described the three and a half feet tall Sir Jeffrey
Hudson, after whom the beer is named, as an “adventurer, courtier and
A letter to the brewery noted that duelling is more commonly spelt
with an e, and suggested a few bottles of the brew might be a suitable
Nothing arrived, but Evans has now noticed that the label spelling
has been changed – unfortunately to ‘duelist’. Sometimes you feel you
However, he is now planning to offer his services to the
Suffolk-based St Peter’s brewery. Their King Cnut ale looks like a
proofreading disaster waiting to happen.
Whittle’s Ship comes in
Brian Whittle must have realised he was putting himself in the
firing line when he threw a party to mark the 25th anniversary of his
Manchester based agency and organised a limerick competition.
The Cavendish Press boss offered a bottle of champers for the best
fiveliner and many had a dig at Whittle, well-known in the freelance
game as someone who never misses an opportunity to boost business and
keep the credits rolling in.
He and his team fastened on the Harold Shipman story like a shark on
a surfer off an Adelaide beach. Whittle co-authored with Jean Ritchie
Prescription for Murder , described as “the most considered account” of
the deadly doc’s killing spree, to boost the bank balance even further.
Mercury Press’s Chris Johnson – Whittle’s friendly rival from the
other end of the East Lancs Road- took his life in his hands and risked
a savaging to walk off with the bubbly.
Purists among the ageing hacks present queried if it fully matched
the limerick criteria but this still attracted the biggest cheer of the
When Doctor Shipman set out to murder
Brian said: “Now lads. that’s a real pearler
“It’d be such a sin,
“Not to cash in ”
So get stuck in – it’s a really big earner!”
Second coming -in Ludlow!
Tidings of comfort and joy from the Great Barr Observer .
Birmingham couple Mary and Joseph Papuga won a competition run by
Travelodge for a Christmas weekend break in any one of its hotels.
They decided to go for Stratford Upon Avon and called up the lodge
only to be told there was, er, no room at the inn. Instead they had to
opt for Ludlow.
And reporter Adam Smith managed to find an excellent extra detail. Joseph used to be a carpenter.
HACKS at The Sun had a really chavvy Christmas with this tree in the
newsroom at Fortress Wapping. It was decorated with Burberry-style
scarves and crackers and, instead of the traditional fairy, a plastic
Barbie-style doll on the top. With blonde hair, pink high heels and a
Burberry-style skirt, she was a dead ringer for chav soccer star Wayne
Rooney’s girlfriend Colleen. The Sun’s famous “world’s greatest moos
cow” was festooned with Christmas party lights