Monthly Archives: Jun 2014

Memorandum to all staff – Daily Mail ethics c. 1966

In a week where a UK jury are deliberating on the actions of some members of the press, I share this is a very timely reminder of how far standards have fallen, in my lifetime. Thanks to Dysonology for the original post.


In 1966-7 my Dad got a job as a young reporter for the Daily Mail’s Manchester office, just as it was made Newspaper of the Year. All staff received the memo below from editor Mike Randall.

When Dad sent it to me, he added: “Mike Randall left the paper soon afterwards. It became a tabloid and in ethical terms its downhill slide began. However, I think Randall’s statement still stands as the model of propriety to which all journalists working for all media should aspire.”

I couldn’t agree more – and it’s certainly how I’d hope people expect writers to behave. I’d add though that in the 15 years I’ve been writing, I haven’t noticed nearly as much awareness of the dangers of libel, sensationalism and indiscretion in young journos as was drilled into [my generation of] pre-internet trainees. I don’t think Twitter and the pressure of instant comment helps…

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The family who yesterday adopted Blackie called back today for Brows (now called Rose).  They were delighted to be reunited and we left them playing together in the garden.  The daughters of the family are completely in love with them already.  Two very lucky dogs.



The puppies are now ready for rehoming….now we enter the next phase, finding homes for the final three, Brows, Blackie and Dennis.  No one knows how hard or how easy this will be, so its just try it and see….we will keep you informed!

So its now the final weekend of fund raising with Daisy Boo’s Paws for Puppies bag sale!  She will be posting photos of samples and asking for bids.  You can also request personalised designs.

I have had to arm wrestle her to accept reimbursement for  her purchase of the blank bags, and insist she takes out the money she spends on postage.

So now its drawing to a close, its time to say thank you to many, I hope I don’t miss anyone….

Firstly to Sue Burch whose first words “I’ll just take the puppies home for the weekend” started this whole adventure.  There is no doubt in my mind without her unstinting care 24 hours a day they would not have survived.

Then there’s Kareen Ouhennou and Susan Sharp whose networking quickly found a home for three puppies.  This gave us hope that maybe we could manage to find homes for them all, and not resort to putting the pups back in the park, which was the original plan. 

Then came Daisy Boo with her Paws for Puppies plan.  She has given all her time, her materials, her expertise and her money unstintingly.  She also saved Sue and I from bankruptcy! Thank you.

Also to friends here who carted around puppy food, crates, puppies and us.

Our super Vet Dr Mohamed Zeouine Meskani and Assistant Hassan, who certainly saved Dennis’s life and has given us advice, encouragement and support throughout.

And our friends and benefactors near and far who have allowed us to not only feed the little puppies but to also worm, treat for fleas and pay for the first half of their vaccinations.  Your interest and kindness has filled our hearts.

Finally, to the Agadirian gentleman (who wishes to remain anonymous) who has agreed to fund the second half of their vaccinations.  Thank you.  This means whatever money is raised this final weekend can go towards sterilisations, which of course helps solve the long term problem far better than poisoning.

Thank you for helping The Agadir 8.  Sissy would be proud.