The Sunday Times and Croissants – Nigella is winning in the court of public opinion

The Sunday Times and Croissants, Nigella is winning ...

There is something special about Sunday morning, the Sunday Times, hot croissants with honey and butter, excellent.

Headlines “Nigella is winning in the court of public opinion” makes the headlines this week. Nigella Lawson has won the sympathy of the public, despite admissions of marijuana and cocaine abuse. Charles Saatchi, on the other hand, a nicotine smoker, has been tarnished by recent revelations of a torrid relationship. Yes the court of public opinion is swinging behind the kitchen goddess. 39% of people have greater sympathy for the TV chef following evidence at the family fraud trial last week. Just 2% think Saatchi had a raw deal.

James Herring, founder of Taylor Herring PR said, “Nigella is very much her own brand and that brand is all about food indulgence and authenticity”. So expect a surge in fringe recipes, to include “roulade of exotic herbs”, canapes of cannabis, confit of crack cocaine and a mirepoix of marijuana. Yes you heard it here first in The Sunday Times and Croissants. The Nigella guide to “cooking with pot and pans” will be on line soon.

Good PR will be of little help to members of parliament as “11% pay rise for MPs is met with fury” also makes the headlines. MPs are set to receive an inflation busting pay rise despite opposition from the public and all three party leaders. The average pay will increase to £74,000 with effect from 2015. “Worth every penny” would be my response to the criticism. Pass me a spliff sherbet (page 32), thanks.

David Smith, leads with “growth up, the deficit down, what’s not to like”. Great tagline! In The Saturday Economist, we focus on the Autumn Statement. “Britain’s economic plan is working but the job is not done”, said Chancellor Osborne in the Autumn statement this week, “we need to secure the economy for the longer term”. Yes the Chancellor is intent on fixing the roof despite the sunny OBR outlook. The office for Budget Responsibility has revised up forecasts for the economy with growth of 1.4% expected this year and 2.4% next. Better still, borrowing is expected to fall significantly. By 2018-19, the OBR forecast the government will not have to borrow anything at all.

Back from the brink of bankruptcy indeed. Growth is up, the deficit is down, unemployment is down, inflation is falling, spending will be kept under control, we even expect a rise in investment next year and the march of the makers will pick up the pace. Just the trade figures alone will continue to disappoint.

Back to the day Jobs – Highlights of the week
Monday – team meetings in the morning and in the afternoon a meeting with the Chamber economics, research and PR team.

Tuesday, lunch and economics presentation to the South Manchester Enterprise Network.

Wednesday, lunch and presentation of the Greater Manchester Forecasting Model with an overview from Oxford Economics. Great fun as I appear on the panel and present perspectives on trade and investment. A career ambition fulfilled! Always a delight to listen to Neil Gibson, now a professor in Northern Ireland but a real expert on the Manchester economy.

Thursday, lunch with Mark Fahy from the London Stock Exchange. Great to hear of such a strong pipeline for IPOs for the current year and over the next two years.

Friday, morning presentation on the economics overview at the Trafford Council budget meeting with local businesses. Good turn out and interesting set of questions. In the afternoon, it’s the team Christmas party. A great lunch for a great executive team and a great end to a good year for pro.manchester. We are really excited about the plans for 2014.

Saturday, the day starts as usual with tea, the FT, and the Economist app. In the afternoon, no tennis, we are off to spend the evening with Mary’s parents and family. We return on Sunday with Meursault and Home made Marmalade. Excellent. Hence the late mailing today

That’s all for now, hope all is well, more news next week, watch out for details of our Financial Directors Forum. The call for content starts soon with launch planned in 2014.

© John Ashcroft 2013.

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