The feral beast: Tim Willis: The new Rachel Johnson
Sunday 10 April 2011
He has penned biographies of Syd Barrett, and Nigel Dempster. Now Tim Willis turns his attention to making later life seem sexy.
The former diarist and magazine writer has been made editor of an online venture called High50, a community for the over-50s which launches in June. Willis's brief is to make this mag funky. "So many in the 50-plus bracket have a mindset more in common with teenagers and wouldn't dream of interacting with Saga," says founder Robert Campbell. "It's high time there was a sexy, cool, interesting and relevant alternative." Isn't that Rachel Johnson's scheme for The Lady?
Times reshuffles Cameron's Cabinet
A leader in The Times on Wednesday recommended David Cameron reshuffle his Cabinet, and bring some new old faces into power. "Distinguished politicians such as Stephen Dorrell, Lord Ashdown of Norton-sub-Hamdon, and Sir Malcolm Rifkind still have a lot to offer," it thundered. As it happens, Rifkind is the father of Hugo Rifkind, who happens to write leaders at The Times.
Hellen earth for sex blogger
All change at The Sunday Times, where the news editor and deputy news editor are switching to writing roles. The two rare vacancies have been created by the departure of Nick Hellen and his deputy, Dipesh Gadher. Steve Bevan from The Times newsdesk is tipped as Hellen's replacement. Hellen is something of a Marmite figure – he once emailed an anonymous sex blogger, asking for a photo ahead of revealing her identity in the paper, writing: "As the story will be on a colour page, we would prefer the outfit to be one of colourful eveningwear."
A good day for bad news?
It's been a traumatic week for hacks at the News of the World, which has issued a humiliating apology to eight victims of phone hacking. But some are suspicious about the timing of last week's police activity. Chief reporter Neville Thurlbeck and former news editor Ian Edmondson were arrested on Tuesday. This was the same day as the UK Press Awards, at which the Screws was a candidate for Newspaper of the Year.
Thurlbeck turns out nice again
In other Neville Thurlbeck news, I'm told he has a weakness for George Formby, and likes to carry a ukulele. The question is whether that image can ever replace the one currently lodged in our heads – naked at a nudist B&B he was exposing in the Screws. Having got his story, he made his excuses and stayed.
Tory MP tells Auntie where to go
Another assault on the BBC's London to Manchester relocation. Tory MP Peter Bone has told the Commons he has "a better idea": the Beeb should move to his constituency of Wellingborough, Northants. But a Tory colleague, Jacob Rees-Mogg, points out that a mass move to Wellingborough by BBC types "might lead to a whole load of left-wing voters which could undermine" Bone's majority.
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