Daily mail

Mail hits back at Speaker

After cross-party condemnation and a Commons summons by Lindsay Hoyle, it was only natural that the Mail would hit back over its Angela Rayner story. The Daily Mail has today ridden to the rescue of its sister newspaper the Mail on Sunday, aiming a double-barrelled blast at both the Speaker and Labour’s deputy leader. In a typically strident front page splash, it roars ‘No, Mister Speaker!’ declaring that David Dillon, the editor of the Sunday paper, will not appear before Hoyle to explain a report which suggested Rayner tries to distract Boris Johnson at PMQs, in the manner of Sharon Stone in Basic Instinct. The Daily Mail claims that three more MPs have now

Mail man changes his ‘Russian-sounding’ name

Sanctions, boycotts, bans, penalties of all kind: there’s no end to the punishments being slapped on Moscow. But amid the frantic rush of institutions and individuals to distance themselves from Russia, some seem to be somewhat overstepping the mark.  The Cardiff Philharmonic has today cancelled an all-Tchaikovsky programme as ‘inappropriate at this time’; Russian conductor Valery Gergiev was sacked last week by the Munich Philharmonic Orchestra for failing to condemn Putin. In Italy, the University of Milano-Bicocca has been forced to backtrack after trying to cancel a Dostoevsky course while at least three MPs in the UK have suggested stripping Russians in Britain of their citizenship. But now one man at the Daily Mail has

All change at Mail towers

As war between Ukraine and Russia continues to rage, closer to home a very different conflict has been playing out at Daily Mail HQ over on High Street Kensington. Mr S has chronicled the recent comings and goings in the hallowed halls of Northcliffe House, as Paul Dacre, Geordie Greig and Martin Clarke have all found themselves in and out of the building’s revolving doors since November. Now another bigwig has joined the list of those exiting the Mail group: Mail+ editor Gordon Thomson,  who is departing after three years. The Mail+ project, which has been referred to internally as the ‘baby’ of owner Lord Rothermere, was launched to much fanfare in 2019. It is a

Mail exodus to The Times continues

The shenanigans at Northcliffe House have given Mr S much to write about in recent months. Whether it’s Geordie Greig’s sudden fall from grace, Ted Verity’s promotion or Lord Rothermere’s designs on DMGT, it appears that the Daily Mail creates as much drama as it reports. Unfortunately it seems that the shock return of Paul Dacre last month has ruffled a fair few feathers in the newsroom, with some hacks fearing a return to what they call the ‘bad old days’. Amid the uncertainty and conflicting reports about comings and goings, it’s unsurprising that some young guns now see their futures elsewhere. For tonight the Times has proudly sent around an email to its staff announcing that the

New Mail editor’s plans revealed

Fear and unease have stalked the corridors of Northcliffe House since the announcement last Wednesday of Geordie Greig’s defenestration as editor of the Daily Mail. A ‘funereal’ atmosphere has lingered over the paper’s staff ever since, with nervy hacks fearing the return of expletive-riddled editorial explosions associated with Greig’s predecessor Paul Dacre. There’s also considerable unease about the decision to combine the editorships of the daily and Sunday papers into a single post. But on Saturday, Greig’s successor, Ted Verity, sought to reassure the Sunday journalists that their future were safe. Addressing the newsroom as his final edition of the Mail on Sunday went to print, the recently-promoted Verity told

Charles Moore

The Spectator’s Notes | 22 November 2018

It will be interesting to see whether the about-face of the Daily Mail on Brexit makes the slightest difference to anything. Paul Dacre was admirably consistent when he was editor and the paper did well. But on the whole, the history of the Mail is that it is happy dramatically changing sides on major issues. Under David English, for instance, it suddenly switched to Europe and Heseltine away from his earlier Thatcher-worship, and few seemed to notice. Thus, after attacking the High Court judges as enemies of the people in 2016, under Dacre, it can move effortlessly to attacking the Brexiteers as ‘preening peacocks’ etc, under Geordie Greig. So long

Low life | 3 January 2019

The Airbnb accommodation at Paddington, chez Mohammed, was a fourth-floor room measuring about nine feet by five. As well as having a single bed, this small space was extraordinarily well equipped, with a wardrobe, huge fridge, sink, draining board, ironing board, microwave oven, kettle, two electric hobs, a set of saucepans and enough cutlery and crockery for a select dinner party, and a television set. The room’s heat, which came from an unidentifiable source, was tropical. The mattress had a couple of broken springs and was horribly filthy, but the sheet covering it smelt freshly laundered and for just £22 a night I was well pleased. When I switched on

The Mail may suffer yet for its Brexit volte-face

I may have spoken too soon when I predicted that the Daily Mail might not suffer from its Brexit volte-face. At the Daily Telegraph’s Christmas charity phone-in last Sunday, I was struck by how many donating readers mentioned the Mail’s desertion, and by reports of recruitment by the Telegraph of disconsolate Mail readers. There are rumours that the Mail’s new editor, Geordie Greig, has personally rung to plead with readers who are cancelling their subscriptions. Geordie is a charming man, but obviously he cannot speak to all the disgruntled tens of thousands. The Mail has chosen to switch from an insurgent to an establishment position just when that establishment is

The curious omission from Alan Rusbridger’s book

Alan Rusbridger’s new book, Breaking News: The Remaking of Journalism and Why It Matters Now, is a thoughtful, if somewhat prolix, analysis of the tectonic changes that the internet is effecting on journalism. But its real message – and how insidiously it drips through the pages – is that virtually every national newspaper in Britain is scurrilous, corrupt and amoral with one iridescent exception. Yes, you’ve guessed it: the Guardian. Now Alan is a very gifted journalist with huge achievements to his name – achievements, incidentally that he’s not reluctant to dwell on. So how sad that the defining tone of this tome is sanctimony and self-justification. Unedifyingly, it manages to combine rather cloying

Why I will miss Paul Dacre

I really will miss Paul Dacre when he steps down as editor of the Daily Mail. There have been times, I must admit, when I have attacked the Mail’s grotesque behaviour and stupefying hypocrisy, but the following are good and true points to be made about Paul. 1) He fully, properly edits, and his proprietor has the sense to let him do so. 2) He values good writers, and pays them accordingly. 3) He is brave, especially in not minding the disapproval of polite society; and this courage has enabled him to crash around in the china shop of political correctness at a satisfying decibel level. For us in Sussex, there may

Diary – 14 June 2018

Awake to the Today programme and ordure being dumped on me by Polly Toynbee while the Mail’s legendary Dame Ann Leslie sings my praises. I recall how Toynbee penned a venomous piece about my predecessor, Sir David English, only days after he died at 67 (though, through a slip in the actualité, his Who’s Who entry had him at 66). I never cease to be amused by the way the left demonise anyone they disagree with, but poor Polly’s obsession with the Mail is almost psychotic. Roger Alton, the ex-editor of the Observer, wades in, writing to the Guardian that I am ‘a very great man and a newspaperman of genius

In praise of Paul Dacre

Eamon de Valera used to say that if he wanted to know the true feelings of the people of Ireland he needed only to look into his own heart. You could say the same about Paul Dacre, shortly to step down as editor of the Daily Mail. When it comes to the sentiments of Middle England, or at least quite a bit of it, he knows what it loves and fears because those are his own sentiments. He doesn’t second guess his readers; he is properly authentic. I knew him from his brief, two year stint at the Evening Standard, and he was the best editor I have ever worked

Read: Daily Mail editor’s resignation letter

Paul Dacre has just announced that he is to step down as editor of the Daily Mail in November, having edited the newspaper since 1992. Mr S has been passed a copy of his letter to staff announcing the news. Dacre says he now plans to take on ‘broader challenges within the company as chairman and Editor-in-Chief of Associated’. Here is the letter: Will it be a case of champagne at the ready at the paper’s fiercest rival, also known as the Mail on Sunday?

Why are businesses so terrified of idiots?

I am boycotting Center Parcs. Admittedly, this is not going to have an enormous impact upon my life. It’s a bit like announcing with great pride and fervour that I am boycotting Clare Balding or Pakistan or goat’s cheese. All of those things I am perfectly able to live without and already do so. I will never eat goat’s cheese, visit Pakistan or watch Clare Balding. I did once visit Center Parcs, mind — about ten years ago. It was excruciatingly awful — the kids hated it as much as we did. Extortionately expensive, restrictive, boring and full of who I can only describe as ‘tossers’ cycling along tarmacked lanes

How to ban newspapers and influence people

How to signal your virtue is one of the most perplexing problems in modern etiquette. It has to be done, obviously. No one can get on in life, or at least on Twitter, without making clear to friends and strangers that they are for good things and against bad things. So pressing has the need for self-promotion become, people stop me in the streets and ask: “How do I do it, Nick? How do I boost my profile and maybe getting a slot on Radio 4, while I’m about it?” I’m tired of being bothered, so I’ll put my reply on the Web. The path of the self-righteous is strewn

Is Virgin Trains really any more ‘progressive’ than the Daily Mail?

Virgin Trains has announced that it will no longer sell the Daily Mail on board its services nor offer it free to first class passengers on the basis that ‘We’ve decided that this paper is not compatible with the VT brand and our beliefs’. It goes on to say its staff have objected to the Mail’s ‘position on…immigration, LGBT rights, and unemployment’ – although it fails to expound exactly what it finds so offensive about the Mail’s coverage on these issues. So is it a victory for the ‘Stop Funding Hate’ campaign – or a reflection that the Daily Mail has been at the forefront of criticism of Virgin Trains

What the hell was Paperchase thinking?

Last Saturday, the high-street chain Paperchase ran a promotion in the Daily Mail offering two free rolls of wrapping paper. Nothing objectionable about that, you might think, even if the design was migraine-inducingly awful. I have lost count of the number of times I have been dragged into this ghastly emporium by my daughter on a weekend in pursuit of some over-priced piece of tat. Not recommended if you are nursing a hangover. Later that day, the left-wing lobby group Stop Funding Hate launched a fusillade against Paperchase on Twitter for having the temerity to advertise in Britain’s second-best-selling daily newspaper. ‘Is a Daily Mail promotion what customers want to

High life | 6 July 2017

A funny thing happened on my way to lunch last week. I opened the Daily Mail and read a few snippets about the Camilla–Charles saga by Penny Junor, stuff to make strong men weep with boredom. But then a certain item caught my eye: ‘Camilla and the Queen finally met in the summer of 2000, when Charles threw a 60th birthday party at Highgrove for his cousin King Constantine of Greece… They shook hands, smiled at one another, Camilla curtseyed, and they had a moment or two of small talk before going to different tables for lunch.’ Hey, wait a minute, I told myself. You were there, for God’s sake,

When gossip was king

This month marks the tenth anniversary of the death of Nigel Dempster, once the world’s best-known gossip columnist. For three decades he was paid a fortune by the Daily Mail to provide juicy tittle-tattle about the royal family (he was a close friend of Princess Margaret), the aristocracy (particularly priapic minor baronet Dai Llewellyn), tycoons including Jimmy Goldsmith and racing figures such as Robert Sangster, as well as mainstream TV stars like David Frost and Robin Day. Alas, by the time of Nigel’s death (from the awful effects of progressive supranuclear palsy) his Diary page was already an anachronism. His brand of gossip was in its death throes. His cast

The anti-tabloid snobs are the real bigots

So now we know who’s really responsible for the horrible attack at Finsbury Park Mosque: it was the Sun wot done it. And maybe the Daily Mail too. No sooner had Darren Osborne allegedly crashed a hired van into Muslim worshippers than certain so-called liberals were stringing up the tabloids. The low-rent press poisoned his mind, just as it’s always poisoning plebs’ minds, they claimed, without a morsel of evidence. He could take the Guardian for all we know. They present their tabloid-baiting as a challenge to bigotry, when anyone who knows anything about history knows that fearing the tabloids and their dim, malleable readers is classic British bigotry. Just