People & Business : Guests cast chill over tourist conference

Heritage Secretary Virginia Bottomley was doing her bit for British tourism yesterday at a conference at the banqueting suite at Westminster Palace. Though she was treated to warm applause she may have noticed a certain frost in parts of the auditorium.

The chill was emanating from two of the guests. In one corner sat Sir Rocco Forte, erstwhile head of the Forte hotels empire. In the other corner, as far away as possible, was Charles Allen, chief executive of Granada, Forte's conqueror in last year's epic bid battle. Needless to say, they didn't speak.

Grant Bovey, the video entrepreneur whose bid to buy Nottingham Forest never materialised, is gradually coming to terms with life without footie.

Poor Mr Bovey was dumbstruck when Lawrie Lewis, his main backer, pulled out at the last minute. Apparently Mr Bovey had all the documents on the table ready for signing when Mr Lewis dropped his bombshell. "I spent the weekend trying to collect my thoughts but for now, it's back to sorting my video business out."

Watershed Pictures has been in a company voluntary arrangement for two years but there could soon be an important development. "We had two approaches to buy the business before the Nottingham Forest situation came up. We are now revisiting those."

The Institute of Chartered Accountants has broken with tradition by choosing a woman as vice-president for the first time in its 117-year history. Dame Sheila Masters of KPMG will take on the top spot in 1999 and take the august body into the next millennium. She saw off the challenge of Price Waterhouse's clubbable Graham Ward to win the post at the third time of trying. Dame Sheila is regarded by beancounter wags (there are one or two) as already running the country on account of her non-executive directorship of the Bank of England and similar roles at the Inland Revenue and the NHS.

Good to see that students have lost none of their radical fervour. On Tuesday, the Oxford Union Society - nursery of many a great and lesser parliamentarian - hosted a debate on the motion: "This House believes that big business is bad for democracy and social development."

At the event, which was sponsored by St Luke's, the ad agency that is run as a co-operative, the students appeared overwhelmingly in favour of the motion. But the opposition had all the best jokes. Bill Emmott, editor of the Economist, opened by saying he had a problem with his position, since he bore some resemblance to Lenin, who - it will be recalled - remarked that whenever he met a big businessman he wanted to kill him.

Douglas Gustafson, a World Bank official speaking on the same side, had earlier recalled his 16 years as a butcher before pointing out that, all thoughts to the contrary, this was different from his current calling.

The City analyst merry-go-round is spinning apace at Hoare Govett. Julie Bower has quit as the broker's alcoholic beverages analyst to join Schroders.

Her departure leaves stalwart Eric Frankis holding the fort. But as one sector specialist bales out another parachutes in. Julian Hardwick, the former BZW food manufacturing analyst, is due to team up with Hoare Govett any week now.

Sport
The sun rises over St Andrews golf course, but will it be a new dawn for the Royal and Ancient Golf Club?
sportAnd it's Yes to women (at the R&A)
Arts and Entertainment
Friends is celebrating its 20th anniversary this year
tvSeries celebrates 20th anniversary
Sport
Yaya Touré (left) and Bayern Munich’s Spanish defender Juan Bernat
footballToure's lack of defensive work is big problem for City
Voices
voicesApple continually kill off smaller app developers, and that's no good for anyone
PROMOTED VIDEO
Arts and Entertainment
Liam Neeson said he wouldn't
tv

Liam Neeson's Downton dreams

Sport
Wembley Stadium
footballNews follows deal with Germany
Arts and Entertainment
A spell in the sun: Emma Stone and Colin Firth star in ‘Magic in the Moonlight’
filmReview: Magic In The Moonlight
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Sport
A 'Sir Alex Feguson' tattoo
football

Arts and Entertainment
Ben Whishaw is replacing Colin Firth as the voice of Paddington Bear
tv

Thriller is set in the secret world of British espionage

Life and Style
life

News
ScienceGallery: Otherwise known as 'the best damn photos of space you'll see till 2015'
Life and Style
fashion

Bomber jacket worn by Mary Berry sells out within an hour

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

SQL Developer - Watford/NW London - £320 - £330 p/d - 6 months

£320 - £330 per day: Ashdown Group: The Ashdown Group have been engaged by a l...

Head of Audit

To £75,000 + Pension + Benefits + Bonus: Saxton Leigh: My client is looking f...

Audit Manager Central Functions

To £85,000 + banking benefits: Saxton Leigh: You will be expected to carry out...

Credit Risk Audit Manager

Up to £90,000 + benefits: Saxton Leigh: Credit Risk Audit Manager required to ...

Day In a Page

Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments
These Iranian-controlled Shia militias used to specialise in killing American soldiers. Now they are fighting Isis, backed up by US airstrikes

Widespread fear of Isis is producing strange bedfellows

Iranian-controlled Shia militias that used to kill American soldiers are now fighting Isis, helped by US airstrikes
Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Topshop goes part Athena poster, part last spring Prada

Shoppers don't come to Topshop for the unique
How to make a Lego masterpiece

How to make a Lego masterpiece

Toy breaks out of the nursery and heads for the gallery
Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Meet the ‘Endies’ – city dwellers who are too poor to have fun

Urbanites are cursed with an acronym pointing to Employed but No Disposable Income or Savings
Paisley’s decision to make peace with IRA enemies might remind the Arabs of Sadat

Ian Paisley’s decision to make peace with his IRA enemies

His Save Ulster from Sodomy campaign would surely have been supported by many a Sunni imam
'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

'She was a singer, a superstar, an addict, but to me, her mother, she is simply Amy'

Exclusive extract from Janis Winehouse's poignant new memoir
Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

Is this the role to win Cumberbatch an Oscar?

The Imitation Game, film review
England and Roy Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption in Basel

England and Hodgson take a joint step towards redemption

Welbeck double puts England on the road to Euro 2016
Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Relatives fight over Vivian Maier’s rare photos

Pictures removed from public view as courts decide ownership
‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

‘Fashion has to be fun. It’s a big business, not a cure for cancer’

Donatella Versace at New York Fashion Week