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April 25, 2008

Gill in a flap in the hunt for Livingstone

it must be tough being the Sunday Times’s star columnist and restaurant reviewer, AA Gill.

One of his latest assignments involved tracking down and interviewing London Mayor Ken Livingstone on the campaign trail.

But finding the peripatetic politician appeared to be a little tricky for a writer more used to hailing a cab to his lunch venue, judging by his article on Ken.

‘I have been trying to get in touch with Ken’s campaign all week,’grumbles Gill in the Sunday Times News Review section.

‘We’ve had three journalists, who really should have had better things to do, begging to find out from the Mayor’s election staff where he was going to be.”

Did he say three? Three journalists acting as researchers trying to find a politician who seems to be pictured in the Evening Standard, London’s free papers and on local TV most nights?

Guess there are some parts of The Sunday Times where the cutbacks have yet to bite…

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But it’s a very different story at The Independent on Sunday where the ‘big newspaper’strapline on the front page clearly doesn’t extend to the size of the staff.

The splash on ‘1,700 doctors’ surgeries disappearing under Government plans’is penned by the paper’s new political editor and ex-Daily Mail hack Jane Merrick.

She was also the author of one of only two stories on page two, both stories on page four and has the lead byline on the two-page spread across page eight and nine. Axegrinder hopes she’s being paid by the word.

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