The PRCA has launched a mole hunt to find which of its board
member's actions led to an internal memo from director-general Chris
McDowall being leaked to the press.
Chairman Tom Watson will ask his board to declare next week that they
were not the source of a leak to the Mail on Sunday which saw McDowall's
personal memo - on the chances of RJH PR joining the body - enter the
RJH chief executive Jack Cassidy denied reports his agency had been
refused membership, attacking the body for appearing to claim his firm
had been blackballed.
The Mail quoted a memo from McDowall to his 21 management board members:
'I was asked to consider whether we would like Sophie Wessex to become a
member. I said no... in my view it would give the wrong message since we
represent best practice.'
RJH took this to mean that someone at the agency had asked McDowall to
consider the firm for membership. In an angry response, Cassidy said no
request had been made and that he was 'flabbergasted' at the suggestion
his agency had been rejected.
PRCA chairman Tom Watson said: 'I will be asking my board next week if
any member distributed it more widely than to other members of the
If a person fails to admit it and is subsequently found to have done so,
I will take a dim view of it.'
'Leaking private correspondence is a very smelly business indeed,'