By Sarah Lagan
South Manchester Reporter editor Lawrence Matheson is asking the public to vote on whether the paper’s weekly columnist James Chapman-Kelly should be sacked.
Matheson launched his "sack or back" campaign after a reader wrote in saying "the poor man should be put out of his misery" and launched a website dedicated to the removal of his weekly insights into life in south Manchester.
When more than 100 letters flowed into the Reporter’s newsroom either defending or criticising the column Matheson decided, in true Big Brother style, to let the public decide.
Matheson said: "Some readers have said I’m spineless and I should get the sack for doing this. We’ve had more letters over this than any other story in my career. We are a democratic paper and will let the readers decide."
The column has been described as everything from "humorous" and "professional"
and "a real tonic" to "tedious"
and "utter drivel".
Chapman-Kelly said: "Constructive criticism is an excellent thing, but garbled rants which cast aspersions on my character and professionalism are about as useful as accepting an invitation to dinner with Jeffrey Darma."
The results of the vote will be released next Thursday in "swingometer"
In this week’s column Chapman-Kelly writes: "Who would want to take away a guy’s living? I have three wives, 10 children and two landlords to support."