Letter: A long time in politics

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The Independent Online
Sir: I actively encourage Michael Portillo and his followers in plans for his 10th anniversary jamboree at Alexandra Palace ('Big Portillo party 'mainly a fundraiser for Tories' ', 10 August).

However, there is a portent in which they might be interested. In early 1991, TV-am - the now erstwhile ITV breakfast television station - booked Alexandra Palace for November that year to celebrate the retention of its franchise.

TV-am, widely reported as 'the most successful television station in the world', firmly believed that it would be well looked after by the successor to Margaret Thatcher - herself ertswhile by that time. A month before the celebration, the announcement came - TV-am had lost its franchise.

The 'celebration' went ahead, in the somewhat altered circumstances of a wake. It is worth noting that ITV franchises last 10 years. Have a nice time, Michael.

Yours faithfully,




11 August

The writer is former Controller, News & Current Affairs, TV-am.