Over breakfast, Fleet St agrees to accept most of Leveson plan

But editors refuse to play a part in new statutory body and want control of standards codes

Fleet Street editors today held an unusual breakfast meeting at the Delaunay restaurant, in central London, where they agreed to accept virtually all Lord Justice Leveson’s proposals for creating an independent self-regulatory body for the press.

But while they ticked off their support for almost all 47 of the recommendations, there remain several obstacles to be overcome if the newspaper industry is to persuade politicians a new press law is unnecessary.

The editors agreed to a new regulatory system that would have powers to impose fines of up to £1m and the introduction of an arbitration service that would reduce the legal cost of libel actions. But the summit rejected the notion that the standards code of the new system should be taken out of the hands of editors. They felt strongly that the code should be drafted by practitioners, not lay people.

More significantly, the editors refused to accept any involvement in the new system of the government-appointed media watchdog Ofcom or of any statutory body.

A day earlier, Oliver Letwin, the policy minister, had told editors that government lawyers and civil servants were working to identify a non-statutory body that could oversee the new regulator. They are waiting for the Government's proposals for the identity of the "verifier" to be revealed and details of how this person or body will operate before responding.

Today's breakfast meeting, organised by James Harding, editor of The Times, and attended by a spectrum of editors that included Paul Dacre of the Daily Mail, Chris Blackhurst of The Independent, Alan Rusbridger of The Guardian, Tony Gallagher of The Daily Telegraph, Dominic Mohan of The Sun and Lloyd Embley of the Daily Mirror, was an indication that the press is anxious to be seen to be working towards establishing a unified position.

In a joint statement released tonight, the editors said: "The editors of all national newspapers met today and unanimously agreed to start putting in place the broad proposals – save the statutory underpinning – for the independent self-regulatory system laid out by Lord Justice Leveson. Lord Hunt and Lord Black will report back to the government very shortly in detail on how the industry proposes to implement the Leveson plan."

The industry has asked the law firm Reynolds Porter Chamberlain to help construct a regulatory model that will avoid the requirement for statute.

Time is of the essence, with the Conservatives wanting a "timetable for progress" in place by tomorrow.

Leveson speaks on privacy in Australia

It is being billed as an “unmissable” event, but organisers have been at pains to make one thing clear: the keynote speaker at tomorrow’s symposium in Sydney on privacy in the 21st century – Lord Justice Leveson – will not be taking any questions, writes Kathy Marks in Sydney.

Lord Justice Leveson is in Australia on an all-expenses-paid trip, and will be holidaying with his wife after fulfilling his speaking engagements. His visit has been keenly anticipated in Australia, which has had its own version of the Leveson Inquiry – a probe of media ethics by a former judge, Ray Finkelstein.

News
Russia Today’s new UK channel began broadcasting yesterday. Discussions so far have included why Britons see Russia as ‘the bad guy’
tv

New UK station Russia Today gives a very bizarre view of Britain

News
John Moore inspired this Coca Cola Christmas advert
people

News
people

Top Gear presenter is no stranger to foot-in-mouth controversy

Arts and Entertainment
Imelda Staunton as Dolores Umbridge in the Harry Potter films
books

New essay by JK Rowling went live on Pottermore site this morning

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
Life and Style
Jamie Oliver’s version of Jollof rice led thousands of people to post angry comments on his website
food + drink
Arts and Entertainment
Vividly drawn: Timothy Spall in Mike Leigh’s ‘Mr Turner’
film

Review: Mike Leigh's biopic is a rambling, rich character study

Arts and Entertainment
glastonbury
Arts and Entertainment
Shelley Duvall stars in Stanley Kubrick's The Shining
film
Arts and Entertainment
Shock of the news: Jake Gyllenhaal in ‘Nightcrawler’
film
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 Media

Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + OTE £100,000: SThree: If you would like to work fo...

Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£20000 - £25000 per annum + Uncapped Commission £100k +: SThree: Trainee Recru...

Trainee Recruitment Consultant

£18000 - £30000 per annum + uncapped: SThree: Do you feel you sales role is li...

Sales Executive - Exhibitions/Sponsorship

£27-32k + commission: Savvy Media Ltd: Sponsorship selling and moving into an ...

Day In a Page

The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

The drugs revolution starts now as MPs agree its high time for change

Commons debate highlights growing cross-party consensus on softening UK drugs legislation, unchanged for 43 years
The camera is turned on tabloid editors in Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter'

Gotcha! The camera is turned on tabloid editors

Hugh Grant says Richard Peppiatt's 'One Rogue Reporter' documentary will highlight issues raised by Leveson
Fall of the Berlin Wall: It was thanks to Mikhail Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell

Fall of the Berlin Wall

It was thanks to Gorbachev that this symbol of division fell
Halloween 2014: What makes Ouija boards, demon dolls, and evil clowns so frightening?

What makes ouija boards and demon dolls scary?

Ouija boards, demon dolls, evil children and clowns are all classic tropes of horror, and this year’s Halloween releases feature them all. What makes them so frightening, decade after decade?
A safari in modern Britain: Rose Rouse reveals how her four-year tour of Harlesden taught her as much about the UK as it did about NW10

Rose Rouse's safari in modern Britain

Rouse decided to walk and talk with as many different people as possible in her neighbourhood of Harlesden and her experiences have been published in a new book
Welcome to my world of no smell and odd tastes: How a bike accident left one woman living with unwanted food mash-ups

'My world of no smell and odd tastes'

A head injury from a bicycle accident had the surprising effect of robbing Nell Frizzell of two of her senses

Matt Parker is proud of his square roots

The "stand-up mathematician" is using comedy nights to preach maths to big audiences
Paul Scholes column: Beating Manchester City is vital part of life at Manchester United. This is first major test for Luke Shaw, Angel Di Maria and Radamel Falcao – it’s not a game to lose

Paul Scholes column

Beating City is vital part of life at United. This is first major test for Shaw, Di Maria and Falcao – it’s not a game to lose
Frank Warren: Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing

Frank Warren column

Call me an old git, but I just can't see that there's a place for women’s boxing
Adrian Heath interview: Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room

Adrian Heath's American dream...

Former Everton striker prepares his Orlando City side for the MLS - and having Kaka in the dressing room
Simon Hart: Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manchester City will rise again but they need to change their attitude

Manuel Pellegrini’s side are too good to fail and derby allows them to start again, says Simon Hart
Isis in Syria: A general reveals the lack of communication with the US - and his country's awkward relationship with their allies-by-default

A Syrian general speaks

A senior officer of Bashar al-Assad’s regime talks to Robert Fisk about his army’s brutal struggle with Isis, in a dirty war whose challenges include widespread atrocities
‘A bit of a shock...’ Cambridge economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

‘A bit of a shock...’ Economist with Glasgow roots becomes Zambia’s acting President

Guy Scott's predecessor, Michael Sata, died in a London hospital this week after a lengthy illness
Fall of the Berlin Wall: History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War

Fall of the Berlin Wall

History catches up with Erich Honecker - the East German leader who praised the Iron Curtain and claimed it prevented a Third World War
How to turn your mobile phone into easy money

Turn your mobile phone into easy money

There are 90 million unused mobiles in the UK, which would be worth £7bn if we cashed them in, says David Crookes