DIARY: Champagne piracy at Fishburn Hedges casino

Diary immersed itself in bubbly company at last week's Fishburn Hedges shindig.

The gathering, staged for the media at the Mall Galleries, adopted a pirate theme. Its invitation, in mock Olde English, called on 'men and women whose Callings and Occupations are to work as broadcasters, columnists, writers, reporters, scribes & co' to enjoy 'lashings (of grog), seafaring fare and deck games'.

Blackjack and roulette were among the diversions on offer. Journalists were incentivised to play by a magnum of champagne for the winner.

What FH failed to foresee, however, is that it was dealing with a, er, profession that needs no such competitive incentive. Security was lax enough for one hack, driven by nothing but unadulterated alcoholic yearning, to sneak off with the shampoo (and very nice it was too), leaving the roulette victor - a journalist from parenting magazine Junior - embarrassingly empty handed. Still, got to stay sober for the kids, guys.

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