Biography press deal dropped

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THE SUNDAY TIMES has changed its mind about serialising a new biography of Peter Mandelson after his resignation from the Cabinet, it was reported yesterday.

Last week The Guardian reported that Mr Mandelson had borrowed pounds 373,000 from Geoffrey Robinson, who himself resigned as paymaster-general on Wednesday, so that he could buy a house in Notting Hill, west London.

That was said to be the main revelation in the book by the political journalist Paul Routledge, and The Sunday Times was not interested in spending large sums of money on something everyone already knew.

A publishing source is reported to have said The Sunday Times had offered a revised deal to the publishers Simon and Schuster to run extracts in yesterday's paper, instead of in February as planned, for a reduced fee. But negotiations broke down.