Back Issues 13.02.03

When Harry met Rita

The Sun pulled off a world exclusive on the reunion of the survivor of a trawler disaster, Harry Eddom, and his wife Rita in Iceland. The paper managed to get exclusive pictures after its Leeds staffman, Michael Cresswell, offered to get Rita to Iceland where her husband was in hospital. It involved a drive to Hull, train to Glasgow and a flight to Iceland. Sun reporters were flown in from Manchester and London. The Times reported haughtily on the Sun’s action, claiming it was “successful insofar as it succeeded in getting exclusive pictures of the couple’s re-union, but it did great harm to the Icelanders’ image of British journalism”.

Editors in waiting

In a big shake-up at the Daily Express, foreign editor David English was made associate editor in charge of news. He was replaced by Stewart Steven. Both went on to national editorships. English at the Daily Mail, and Steven at The Mail on Sunday.

Searching for yesterday

Beatle Paul McCartney was pictured in the PA photo library, rummaging through photo files selecting photographs for an advert. With him was Peter Asher, brother of actress Jane, who found success as half of the pop duo Peter and Gordon and as a top record producer in the US.

Brown begins his climb

Jim Brown, who went on to head leading regional newspaper group Newsquest, was making his way up the Thomson Organisation. He had just been appointed sales manager of Aberdeen Journals. He was formerly a reporter with the Ayrshire Post, deputy news editor of the Evening Citizen, Glasgow, and publicity manager for The Scotsman Publications.

Fond farewell to Irons

In New York, there was a big turn out of foreign correspondents to mark the retirement of Evelyn Irons, who had worked for the Daily Mail and Sunday Times. She was famous for a scoop in 1954 on the Guatemala revolution. Irons rode a mule for four days through the mountains to get the story. This was remembered by an inscription “Offget ass, onget mule” on a silver salver presented to her by colleagues.

Lamb takes up northern post

The Daily Mirror in Manchester was giving its deputy night editor, Larry Lamb a send-off. Lamb, who went on to edit The Sun and  receive a knighthood, was taking the Daily Mail’s northern editor’s chair. Farewell gifts included the “Compleat Editors Kit” – red braces, king-size table lighter (these were the days before non-smoking offices) and an iced water jug.

Proops tugs the leash

Legendary Daily Mirror advice columnist Marje Proops was taking Dog to task in the Press Gazette letters’ column. She said Dog had implied that if the Press Club opened its doors to women, the bar takings would drop because men drink less in mixed company. “Surely you are not suggesting that women, in this age of equality, are heel-tappers?” she queried. “It occurs to me that men might drink more if there were a few sober women drivers around to run them home. But apart from the squalid cash aspect of the situation, it’s the idea of sex segregation that’s so disturbing. Isn’t it time male journalists accepted the fact that women journalists are people?”

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