Poor Stefano. There he is in sunny Sardinia, enjoying a taste of la dolce vita for a few days, and nursing a broken heart. Meanwhile, here are we, his colleagues, in upbeat mood despite the London drizzle.
Stefano, of course, will be bemoaning the comprehensive trouncing of his beloved Azzurri by those pestiferous Spaniards. At i Towers, however, we are celebrating the 500th edition of the newspaper. (I did suggest to Stef that he flew home to join the festivities, but heroically, he said he'd soldier on in Sardinia. Poor baby.)
Five hundred editions! It only seems like yesterday that i was launched. Since then, we've added the Saturday edition (in May last year), and i's soaring circulation not to mention the newspaper's unique relationship with its readers has passed into Fleet Street legend.
For those of us on the staff, though, I think our overwhelming memory will be of how much fun we've had. Launches are always hugely enjoyable, mainly because there is so much freedom to be creative. There are no traditions to uphold you never hear the phrase "we never do that here", which strangles any imaginative initiative before you've had time to say: "Hey, how about..."
A lot of the credit for this must go to Stefano, who has always been at pains to encourage new talent and new ideas (even if he does have rather strange taste in football teams...).
And many thanks must go to you, our readers, who have supported us with such enthusiasm. Here's to many more of you and of course, many, many more editions of i.
Stefano Hatfield is awayFollow @VBackyard
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