Sunday Telegraph: editor ‘lost no sleep’ over demands
The Sunday Telegraph is facing legal action from an outraged restaurateur after critic Matthew Norman compared his establishment to the “eighth circle of hell”.
- February 7, 2019
- February 6, 2019
- December 5, 2018
Norman’s review of Shepherd’s in Westminster said: “There is so much about Shepherd’s that is wrong that it would, in a more elegant age, merit a pamphlet rather than a review.”
Suzanne Reeves, a partner at Wedlake Bell, who is acting for Richard Shepherd, said: “We acknowledge that a reviewer is entitled to review a restaurant and express honestly held opinion. We think this was over the top and can’t be an honestly-held opinion.”
In a four-page letter to The Sunday Telegraph, lawyers for Shepherd demanded that he be given space for a right of reply in the newspaper, confirmation the allegations wouldn’t be repeated and a donation made to charity.
Sunday Telegraph editor Dominic Lawson said he hadn’t lost any sleep over the threatened libel action and believed Shepherd would be ill-advised to continue it.
Regarding the contentious review he said: “It’s the opinion, honestly held, based on the experience of the reviewer.
Different reviewers often have different opinions about the same restaurant. It’s a very subjective field – that’s the basis of all such journalism.”
By Dominic Ponsford