News in brief

LAUNCH Mike Lee, London 2012’s director of comms and public affairs, launches his new consultancy, Vero Communications, on 1 March.

PUBLIC AFFAIRS Charles Kennedy's press secretary of four years, Jackie Rowley, has left the Lib Dems. Rowley said she had not decided on her next move.

CORPORATE Gala group has dropped Finsbury and retained Brunswick. The move follows a review of PR after Gala's acquisition of Finsbury client Coral last November.

CORPORATE Wine brand Ernest & Julio Gallo has hired The Central London Partnership's communications manager James Jones as UK & Ireland PR manager.

CONSUMER P&O Ferries has taken on Doug Goodman PR to promote its Dover to Calais crossings, the first time it has used an agency for the route. The campaign will emphasise P&O's unlimited luggage allowance.

B2B Europe's largest golf operator, Crown Golf, has hired Paul Ridley to promote its 2006 expansion. Crown Golf plans to add to its 31 golf clubs and 54 courses and attract more conferences and corporate functions.

AGENCY Cow has opened an office in Cape Town in a bid to introduce 'buzz and on-street activity' consumer PR to southern Africa. Associate director Donald Swanepoel will be the office's MD when it opens in March.

CONSUMER Denby, the two-centuries-old pottery maker, has signed Cirkle Communications as its first agency in a bid to tap into a younger market. Cirkle will position the brand's glassware and tableware ranges as 'accessible and contemporary'.

CONSUMER Low-cost Moroccan airline Atlas Blue has enlisted Frank & Earnest Communications to promote Morocco as a safe and accessible destination.

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