CITY DIARY

More doom and gloom at Le Shuttle. The only shop anywhere near London that sells tickets to ride the train under the Channel is to close. Channel Tunnel operators said the number of tickets being sold did not justify keeping the office open. This may have something to do with its location. The Clackett Lane service station off the M25 on the Surrey- Kent border is not the first place one would choose to site this kind of ticket office.

Those looking to recruit tomorrow's City high-flyers should take note of a team that has made it though to the final of the Proshare/Financial Times national investment competition for schools and colleges.

Given an imaginary £20,000 to invest, the team from Ferndown Upper School in Dorset has so far amassed an impressive £30,447.06 by investing in BT, BP, Barcom, National Power, Heritage and Harrington Kilbride between January and April this year.

However, Tasmin Martle of Proshare emphasised that those who amass the most dosh will not necessarily win in the final. There are other considerations to be judged, she said, such as sound research and careful planning.

The Confederation of British Industry is cranking up its recruitment machine in the search for a director-general now that Howard Davies has decided to jump ship to the Bank of England as deputy governor.

The CBI's advertisements in the national press are notable for their size and ambition. One thing seems clear: only Superman or Superwoman need apply. The specification is for a leader of "real" stature, influence, and achievement, widely respected and trusted, with exceptional communication skills as a speaker, broadcaster and writer thrown in.

The candidate must also have "a desire and vision to influence and serve" and be "unprejudiced, intelligent, independent and committed". My guess is that CBI members in the shires would prefer a good old-fashioned lobbyist to be putting their case to the Government.

Chris Ward, head of the management buyout section at Touche Ross Corporate Finance, is one happy man. The company has just scored its first success with a management buy-in, injecting the skills of Derek Morgan into Macdermott & Chant, a producer of diaries for the likes of Lloyd's of London and The Economist.

Mr Morgan now has a substantial share of the company, in which 3i has a long-standing investment. So convinced is Ward of the potential of buy- ins that Touche Ross now has a dedicated team nursing potential leaders into transactions of this kind.

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