Pop-up newspaper The New European has secured exclusive rights to print extracts from former Number 10 spin doctor Alastair Campbell’s new diaries.
The first of three extracts appears in today’s edition of the title, which was set up in the wake of the European Union referendum to target the 48 per cent of people who voted “remain”.
Campbell’s fifth diary book, titled Outside Inside 2003-2005, is said to reveal the “extraordinary turmoil at the heart of Downing Street” and then Prime Minister Tony Blair’s “secret plan to quit No 10 and run to be President of Europe”.
As part of the deal, the Archant-owned paper will offer a copy of Campbell’s book for free with new 13-week subscription to the paper.
Campbell said: “A lot of the time the press exaggerated our difficulties. This was one period where if anything they underplayed them because they didn’t know just how bad things were.”
He added: “The diaries brought back all the divisions, for sure, but also the sheer effort and intensity that is required to win elections.”
Matt Kelly, editor of The New European, has described the diaries as “a great coup” for the paper, now in its 13th edition.
Archant announced in July that it would continue publishing the weekly title “on a rolling basis” as long as readers wanted to buy it, claiming it had exceeded sales targets and turned a profit during its initial four-week run.
Campbell, known to be a supporter of Britain staying in the EU, was quoted in the paper in July as calling for another membership referendum.
He is also reported to have sent an expletive-laden email chastising former Sun editor Kelvin MacKenzie after the columnist admitted to “buyer’s remorse” for having voted for Brexit.