DIARY: Ptarmigan: agency, bird, mountain, military op ..

Certain coincidences are raising eyebrows at the offices of Leeds-based Ptarmigan PR. The Royal Marines' military operation in Afghanistan goes under the same name as the Yorkshire PR shop - a piece of namesakery noted first by the BBC on its extensive web-pages about the codename inspired by the small grouse with feathered toes.

'Ptarmigan is also a PR company,' notes the Beeb, 'which lists its greatest strength as its ability to marry creativity with sound, strategic planning and research.'

Not a bad bit of serendipitous PR for the PR agency itself.

But senior director Paul Willis was surprised when he heard the news: 'My dad recently retired from the Royal Marines,' Willis says. 'It's been a bit of a talking point but he has assured me he didn't have a hand in the codename.'

Staff are wondering if, in a celebratory gesture, Ptarmigan founder Gordon Forbes will order another march up the Scottish mountain that gave the agency its name, as he did for the agency's tenth birthday in 1999.

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