Back Issues 11.09.03


The future for ITV, in the face of competition from new satellite and terrestrial channels, rested in local news, a
top television executive told the 1988 Edinburgh International Television Festival. He was Greg Dyke, then programme controller of London Weekend Television. Dyke told the festival: “Regionalism will become more important for ITV. We will become much sharper regionally. There will be more local programmes and regional news. The challenge for ITV in the Nineties is whether it will have enough money to do it.”


Peter Cole, deputy editor of The Guardian, had been named editor of the new quality Sunday national, the Sunday Correspondent, ahead of its launch. Cole said he was leaving with tremendous regret. “I love The Guardian and will not stop loving it when I leave,” he told Press Gazette.


The Chinese authorities were investigating complaints from two British journalists who said they had been assaulted by police using electric cattle prods. The incident happened in Kashgar, 3,000 miles west of Beijing, where there had been rumours of civil unrest.

Daily Telegraph and BBC World Service correspondent Tim Luard and Andrew Higgins of The Independent said they were assaulted by police and held under arrest in a
shabby hotel for 48 hours before being sent back to the capital.


Daily Express editor Nicholas Lloyd sent a sharp note to The Sun and the Daily Mail after they lifted sections of his exclusive interview with Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Lloyd wrote: “Would you like today’s instalment of my interview with the Prime Minister before your ?rst edition, then you will not have to steal it – without the courtesy of attribution – as you did this morning.”


Baby-faced Nick Ferrari was off to run the news desk at Sky Television, working to head of news John O’Loan. Ferrari, 28, was working at the News of the World as features editor of its Sunday magazine.

HEAVY DOMINATION The Sunday Times’s drive to dominate the quality Sunday market saw it announce plans to expand to 10 ections. Three new sections included New Society as well as London, a pullout colour magazine for the capital, and Scotland on Sunday, edited by Andrew Jaspan, aimed at the Scottish market. Press Gazette reported that, in terms of sheer bulk, 10 copies of the new Sunday Times represented the maximum allowable weight for a postman, never mind a newspaper boy or girl.


The Royal College of Nursing had called on the Press Council to censure the Daily Star for a page-three caption under a picture of two topless “trainee nurses”. The caption – headed Angels Delight -said “two gorgeous girls with their ?ngers on the pulse of the nation are trainee nurses Helen Labdon and Jo Grant”. The RCN maintained that neither was a trainee and the portrayal was a “gross insult to nurses and nursing”. Star deputy editor Nigel Blundell responded: “We thought it most ?attering and indeed the patients of the girls have written to us and expressed their delight at the story.”


Japan had protested to the British Ambassador in Tokyo over articles in The Sun and Daily Star on Emperor Hirohito’s failing health. Reviving memories on Japan’s role in the Second World War, The Sun carried an editorial headlined “Hell’s waiting for this truly evil  mperor”. The Star ran a leader headed “The Sinking Sun of Evil”. Both newspaper were typically unabashed by the protests – they splashed on the story.

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