Monday, December 03, 2007

Moving On

Earlier in the summer I was tidying some files at home and a copy of a magazine fell out of a file. It was called THE POLITICO and I published three issues of it while I was running Politico's in 2003. I started re-reading it and began to remember what a brilliant reaction it provoked at the time. It only had three issues because I then closed the shop and the people who produced it moved on to other things.

Anyway, to cut a long story short, over the past three months I have been putting together a business plan to launch a new political magazine, which is almost complete. Funding is nearly secured and we hope to publish the first issue in the Spring.

I have now left 18 Doughty Street, partly to get this project off the ground but also to give me time to write my new book (100 People Who are Screwing Up Britain) and also to take on other TV work. I will probably be presenting on the successor to 18 Doughty Street in some form, but on a freelance basis. I have also been signed up by a speakers' agency.

I hugely enjoyed my time at 18 Doughty Street and will miss what became a very tightly knit team, but as it moves into a new incarnation I felt now was the time to move on. There has been no falling out. I remain great friends with Stephan and Rosamund Shakespeare and for those who think that where there's smoke there must be fire, we're all having dinner in the next couple of weeks. I am hugely grateful to Stephan for the opportunity he gave me.

I am sure those who wish me or 18 Doughty Street ill will draw whatever conclusions they want to, no matter what I say, but our formal parting has been entirely amicable and I wish Stephan and the successor to 18 Doughty Street the very best and look forward to cooperating with it in some form in the future.

I am moving into a new office in Westminster later on today and will be recruiting staff to commence work in early January on the magazine. It is an entirely non-partisan initiative with no party political affiliation. I don't want to go into more detail at the moment but all will be revealed shortly. By the way, if anyone knows a LibDem inclined person who'd like to work as a production assistant, feel free to get in touch!

UPDATE: Thanks to all who have left good wishes in the comments. Can I just make clear that the magazine will have no party affiliation. The LibDem comment at the end was because we already have Labour and Tory supporting staff recruited and we'd quite like a LibDem too. Simple as that. I'll obviously be telling you more about the magazine in the coming weeks.

45 comments:

Daily Referendum said...

Onwards and upwards. Good luck with your new projects Iain.

Icarus said...

"The lady doth protest too much, methinks."

Said the Queen

Is your magazine going to look like a Focus leaflet? Why else would you want a Lib Dem production assistant?

chatterbox said...

Iain, good luck with the new venture and I look forward to getting my first copy, will it be available to order on line?
Sorry to hear you are leaving 18 Doughty Street, I hope you are going to keep doing those great one to one interviews with politicians and journalists for them.

Louise said...

Good luck with everything. Presumably you'll be adding details of how to subscribe to the new magazine?

Howard said...

A pity as I thought you were a good interviewer. The long in depth ones were some of the best on offer in recent times.

however I wish you well with the magazine.

cassandra said...

Perhaps you could get the 'Hitch' to do a spot? and Devils Kitchen to do the in depth interviews?
I would pay good money to read a Brown/DK get together!

Man in a Shed said...

In some ways this shows what a high risk venture the 18DS move is. When our local IT supplier moved in office from a local industrial estate to a shiny office in a nearbye town their business dropped to near zero and it closed. Changing the formula is a risky business, but who dares wins ( or if the lose they keep quiet about it ).

The magazine sounds interesting. Apparently my bank details will be on the internet somewhere so feel free to sign me up.

Anonymous said...

rumours confirmed then....dowdy street has totally collapsed.. good luck with the magazine, though.

Rex said...

More dead tree!

I suppose you will be joining that White chap next!

Long live blogs!

Anonymous said...

100 people screwing up Britain?

I assume you will include Carter Ruck & Partners.

David Hooper wrote an obituary of the firm's founder in the Guardian in 2003. It began.

"The libel lawyer Peter Carter-Ruck, who died on Friday, had a chilling effect on the media. He was a chancer, out for the maximum fee. And he did for freedom of speech what the Boston Strangler did for door-to-door salesmen."

His acolytes live on, inflicting fear and self-censorship upon the media and politicians alike.

May a thousand meteors rain down upon their house.

yours, anon.

http://www.guardian.co.uk/comment/story/0,,1112022,00.html

Anonymous said...

how about ming

Anonymous said...

Good luck Iain. For the Gordon Brown section of 100 People Who are Screwing Up Britain you may be interested in reading the new book :

GORDON IS A MORON

The Definite And Objective Analysis Of Gordon Brown’s Decade As Chancellor Of The Exchequer

Anonymous said...

oh and now that its all over, can you tell us the scores? that is, how many people watched the stuff? you always boast about your stats on your blog but we never ever ever hear anything about dowdy street stats ;-)

Ed said...

Good luck Iain! I'm sure that a politics review/discussion magazine will have an eager audience.

Johnny Norfolk said...

Iain are you becomming a Lib/Dem as it would explain all.

Anonymous said...

great news about the magazine. very funny spin on the tv...

The Splund said...

How nice to see, among the best wishes, the usual astroturfers putting the boot in, thus allowing one the pleasure of having ones opinions of NuLab reinforced.

Allow the Splund to issue unreserved best wishes for your new venture Iain. I always enjoyed 18 Doughty Street (in particular, the election night program was a joy) and your successors will have big shoes to fill. Look forward to subscribing to the magazine.

Windsor Tripehound said...

LibDem inclined person?

I understand that a certain Sir M. Campbell is looking for gainful employment

Newmania said...

I`m rather sorry to see this Iain , if you are going to be devoting your time to a non partisan endevour then in effect the Conservative Party have lot a respected voice. The is room for a right of centre magazine because of the weakness of the Spectator and its narrow social appeal.
Direct comptetition to he New Statesman would be good.


Why we need another Liberal voice in the media is rather beyond me but no doubt there is far more to it than that.

Are you still going to be able to do your blog ?

Anonymous said...

What is it that a magazine offers that the blogosphere can't?

It does seem a slight backward step, but all the best with it.

Trumpeter Lanfried said...

The book sounds great. Go for it. Are you seeking nominations?

Anonymous said...

Iain

I need a new job in january - can you give more details about pay and job descrips etc? If not, when will they be advertised and where?!

Cheers

cath dibble said...

I hope your spin on 18DS is right Iain and it will be up and running again soon but also that you will continue to have a high profile in the media (once Boulton has calmed down!). Like a pp I'm concerned that you seem to be focusing on non-partisan stuff and I think if you do fewer media slots on behalf of the Tories it will be a big loss to balance in the media. I don't want to make you blush but it is so refreshing to have an articulate, moderate person speaking for the Conservatives. I watch behind the sofa when so many of the right are interviewed and you have been the exception - I do hope that isn't going to change.

mutleythedog said...

I am free to write a few 'think pieces' should you wish it Mr Dale...

verity said...

Although I wish you great good fortune with the new direction, Iain, I am with Newmania. The last thing we need is another liberal publication.

As there aren't any right of centre magazines in Britain - OK, the Speccie may be one inch right of centre - surely anyone who brought one out would have a huge take-up.

Laurence Boyce said...

By the way, if anyone knows a Lib Dem inclined person who’d like to work as a production assistant, feel free to get in touch!

Hmm, I’ll do it! Do I have to work in London? Also what is a production assistant exactly? :)

londonerr said...

Best wishes with the new ventures, hopefully blogging remains one of them.

canvas said...

Why LibDem inclined person? That's probably me. But you couldn't afford me. Too bad. :)

Fred said...

What about your application for Maidenhead? I would have thought this was your most important Mission at the moment.

Windsor Tripehound said...

Verity / Newmania

If you're looking for a publication of the right you could do worse than the Salisbury Review. New Criterion is pretty good too, but American.

I agree about the Speccie - it's gone down a lot of late and I'll probably not renew my subscription.

Anonymous said...

Good luck - but I suspect you will need some fresh ideas in what is a relatively small but crowded market (e.g., Statesman, Spectator, bits of the Economist - does anyone read the House Magazine?). Will your blog evolve into the online version of the new venture?

Anonymous said...

Do they have to be a member of the Lib Dems? or can they just adore Ming Campbell instead? Like having his picture on their office wall?

Paul Burgin said...

Am sorry to see you go, but congratulations on the new professional chapter in your life. Always enjoyed popping along to 18 Doughty Street to appear on Blogger TV :)

Laurence Boyce said...

No-one else enjoyed it Paul.

Chad said...

To be fair, you were one of the least ugly presenters. Most of the women (some guesswork involved) were surely the offspring of Greenham Common protestors?

18DS was ugly people tv.

Good luck with the new mag and I look forward to your non-partisan coverage of the smaller parties too... ;-)

Andrew Allison said...

New year; new ventures. I think the idea of an objective political magazine is a good one. In politics, it's always good to hear the opposing views.

I'm sure you will make a success of it and I look forward to seeing you more on TV. Good luck.

Malcolm Dunn said...

Nice comment Chad-not.

Anonymous said...

I don't know chad, i thought that shane greer was a devastatingly handsome cheeky little chappie

David Anthony said...

This is a shame, but all the best with your new venture. Just make sure you declare all your funding for your new business plan...

John said...

Good luck Iain with the magazine and I hope it's as good a read as this blog.

Can I shamelessly plug myself pls, if your looking for someone to do a website for you then give me a shout.

Thanks

lobster blogster said...

Just catching up on some Premiership News:

http://uk.eurosport.yahoo.com/10052007/58/premiership-arsenal-pole-position.html

when I read:

"100 People Who are Screwing Up Britain"

Do feel free to make me your numba wan!

Croydonian said...

Chad - That's no way to speak of the lovely Zoe.

Paul Walter said...

Good luck Iain!!

Erin said...

'18DS was ugly people tv'

I very much beg to differ!

Iain, you know I would love to be the Lib Dem Production Assistant Extraordinaire! ;)

Can't wait to see the new Magazine

Theo Spark said...

I have LibDem leanings!!!