City Diary: United's anoraks find the back of the Internet

And Cantona finds cyberspace up the middle: What a site - Manchester United's screen image

John Willcock
Sunday 23 October 2011 08:30

Manchester United has the 17th most popular web site on the whole of the Internet. Success on the pitch and in the City has now been followed by success in cyberspace. Announcing half-year results yeserday United said that since launching its own site on the World Wide Web last December (ask an anorak what this bit means) it has had more than a million visits.

Apparently the site itself is vast, with loads of detail about players, plans for the club and so on. It also has a "Chat Forum" for fans to communicate through, which has clocked up more than 7,000 messages. One company, Internet Direct, is so impressed that United has been nominated for its "Yell Awards" for "Best site on the Internet." Talk about planting the ball in the back of the net. If you're a fan and have nothing better to do with your life, here's the address: http://

Peter Hyde, the head of UK research at Kleinwort Benson, has been poached by BZW to head its transport team. Mr Hyde was the top-ranked analyst in the Extel survey in 1993 over all sectors, and also won accolades as an analyst in the water sector from 1989 to1995. BZW trilled yesterday: "We're delighted. It's a feather in our cap."

Since Mr Hyde will be swapping the central location of Kleinwort's Fenchurch Street offices for BZW's new ones miles away in Canary Wharf, Mr Hyde must have been paid an even heftier transfer fee than usual.

Sir Nicholas Goodison, the former chairman of TSB and now deputy chairman of the Lloyds TSB Group, is not happy about the future of the modern art collection built up by the TSB before it was gobbled up by the black horse. Sir Nicholas fully accepts that the pictures and sculpture from more than 40 young British artists must move from the TSB's old head office at 60 Lombard Street, which will close once the merger is completed. But he is determined not to move the collection just along the road to 71 Lombard Street, Lloyds Bank's head office - because of the ghastly yellow lino- like floor covering which predominates on the fourth floor, where the top executives hang out.

There's no way of getting rid of the yellow stuff either.It's got a preservation order on it; something about "art deco."

Greg Dyke, chief executive of Pearson Television, was at a dinner party given by Barry Cox, president of the ITV Association, a number of years ago. Mr Dyke was talking to a young man who had just been elected as a Labour MP, and asked him why he had wanted to go into Parliament. "To make a difference," was the gist of the man's reply. Mr Dyke then declared: "The Labour Party needs people like you like it needs a ****ing hole in the head." The young man, of course, was Tony Blair.

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