Sir Tim Bell must be feeling pretty pleased with himself after his
appearance on the BBC’s generally excellent expose of the lobbying
industry - A Word in the Right Ear - which turned out to be somewhat of
an advertorial for Lowe Bell Political.
Interesting also to see the Water Companies’ Association’s Pamela Taylor
gushing on about her proudest achievement - the introduction of
compulsory wearing of seat-belts. No doubt it was modesty that prevented
Taylor and the programme makers mentioning her sterling work for the BBC
during her year as its director of corporate affairs. Readers will
recall that Taylor’s predecessor at the BBC, Howell James - a close
friend of Bell’s - is now political secretary to Prime Minister John
Major. Of course, it would be crass to suggest this had anything to do
with the success of the BBC’s lobbying campaign on charter renewal - on
which James and Taylor worked.
Lowe Bell’s own work for the BBC - which ended last May - was at one
stage costing Auntie some pounds 350,000 a year. Yet this didn’t rate a
’It just wasn’t relevant,’ says reporter Michael Cockerell. ’We could
have said that Damian Green (a former journalist also featured) used to
work for the BBC.’ How’s that for transparency?