December 9th, 2011

Lobbyists’ Umbrella Group Splits

We have in the past covered the lobbying world’s attempts at self-regulation. The most ardent opponent of a statutory register was Francis Ingham of the widely discredited PRCA trade body, he was instrumental in getting rival lobbying and spin trade bodies CIPR and APPC to join up under the UK Public Affairs Council banner to voluntarily produce a joint register of lobbyists. Guido suggested it might be simpler to just require lobbyists to wear leper’s bells.

Ingham has now performed a volte-face and come down on the side of a statutory register.  His email to Elizabeth France, the first and probably last Chairman of the UK Public Affairs Council landed in Guido’s inbox this morning:

From: Francis Ingham

Date: Fri, 9 Dec 2011 10:44:04
To: Liz

Subject: RE:

As it happens Liz, I was about to email you the text below. Happy to talk if you’d like:

Dear Liz

It is with regret that I write to inform you that we are resigning with immediate effect from UKPAC.

I understand that this will be unwelcome news, and I apologize for that fact.

My Board has concluded that a statutory register is the correct public policy choice for the Government to make. It has also concluded that on the basis of UKPAC’s performance over the past year, UKPAC simply is not a credible body to hold that register.

We have come to this conclusion with regret and after considerable debate. The continued inability of UKPAC to deliver a timely, comprehensive and accurate register is an embarrassment to the whole industry. Having founded UKPAC alongside the CIPR and APPC, and having spent a considerable amount of time and money supporting it, we regret the fact that it has failed, but we are clear that this failure is manifest and irreversible.

We have today written to the Cabinet Office, making them aware of this decision, and urging them swiftly to introduce a statutory register, held by an independent body, to run in parallel with the Codes of Conduct that exist already within the industry. We will also this morning be notifying the press, and sending them a copy of this formal note of resignation.

I should like to thank you for the effort you have put into UKPAC over the past year, and personally wish you well in the future.

Yours sincerely

Francis Ingham

Francis Ingham
Chief Executive

Self-regulation looks dead. They brought it on themselves…


  1. 1
    Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

    Hope it doesnt rain then if they have a split umbrella.


  2. 2
    AC1 says:

    Are Croatians the stupidest people in Europe?


  3. 3
    anon says:

    Hope Miliband is not thinking the same. The Socialist party needs stalwarts like him


  4. 4
    Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

    Needs spinning, this one.


  5. 5
    Steve Miliband says:

    DAlexanderMP Douglas Alexander
    Just reminded@BBCNews that a veto stops something happening: Even on Cameron’s own terms what additional safeguards were secured last night?

    So Labour party policy on the hoof, dictated by the BBC?


    • 9
      Engineer says:

      They consulted the blank sheet of paper, and realised that they’d have to busk it.


      • 20
        Son of Gordon says:

        Blank British Paper For Blank British Policies


      • 27
        annette curton says:

        Could be interesting to see how it pans out, what would Labour have done?, cue for more nasal bollocks from Ed Milliband that still hasn’t realised that the people of this Country are heartily sick of the whole EU debacle.


        • 77
          Monsieur Francois says:

          F F S !!!

          Dave did not actually “veto” anything. He merely told his colleagues that the UK wanted no part of what they were proposing, but that they were welcome to proceed without the UK.

          Not really that difficult to understand is it??


          • Gary says:

            Sarkozy’s probably happy. de Gaule would be smiling.

            As for the City of London, its the centre of global financial fraud, and there’s nothing British about it.

            It says alot about the UK that its main industries are a faceless foreign financial center and farcical house prices pumped up by greedy baby boomers.


  6. 8
    Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

    A good looking fella in the picture,my sort of man !


  7. 10
    Anonymous says:

    Is he wearing a leather collar? Speccie, self abusing, bastard.


  8. 12
    Selohesra says:

    Can’t wait til next weeks PMQs – Labour sceptics of which there are many (albeit hushed up by BBC) cheering on Dave and loony end on coalition presumably supporting Milliblank – should be good sport


    • 16
      Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

      Monday will be better when Dave gives statement to house on this 1 hour of it :-)


  9. 13
    One to miss says:

    Ready to puke? One of the guests on tonight’s Have I Got News For You is…

    Tom Watson.


    • 23
      T-Shirt Time says:

      Let’s hope he’s in for a roasting


      • 30
        Selohesra says:

        Which end will Hislop take and which end Merton? – I don’t usually enjoy watching men anally raped but I might make exception for this


    • 55
      Alastair Campbell says:

      Check his website to see if he has pre-approved all they’re going to say, based on the bullet points he provided them, and whether it is the redacted version or the full version. I cannot stress strongly enough that they need to stay on message, you understand, and not balk anything he’s trying to do in his own pursuit of media wrongdoings, particularly those of Guido Fawkes.


  10. 15
    Anonymous says:

    Can’t ruddy spell apologise.


  11. 17

    This isn’t a complete volte-face, as you put it. It’s more like a partial volte-face.

    He’s gone from wanting a lobbyist register to wanting a lobbyist register.

    It looks like (from that email) that he’d probably still prefer a self-regulatory system, but the failure of current attempts to do that means he’s simply gone for (what he believes) is the next best option.


  12. 18
    Billy Bowden is the greatest umpire ever ! says:

    The trouble with the EU is just one of image. It really needs a catchy name like ……….. Fourth Reich.


  13. 19
    Jess The Dog says:

    We have lobbyists. They’re called MPs. They are supposed to listen to constituents.


  14. 22
    Jess The Dog says:

    Good God, what has happened to the standard of grammar on this website? “Lobbyist’s umbrella group”… try “Lobbyists’ umbrella group” unless it is an umbrella group of one and an amoeba splitting….


  15. 29
    Gonk says:

    That bloke looks as though he ought to be in a remake of the Ipcress File.


  16. 36
    The Sleeper says:

    That pompous,facile midget Alexander on Sky slagging off Cameron…..but has no answers of his own….Boulton,clearly fed up with speaking to the twat, cuts him off saying he’s off to speak to Cameron!


  17. 38
    IT is S not Z you illiterate Cunt. says:

    How come the Hunt can’t spell apologise? How can any Hunt who spells apologise as apologize belong to a UK lobbying group?


    • 70
      "I" Before "E" says:

      Forget about joining Europe, they’ve joined the US. E.G. “Jail,” “Tire,” “Wagon” etc and plenty of other words that have two spellings show up in the American version so often no one notices any more. It may have to do with American spell check on computers. If the computer tells them so, it must be so, right? Since British children learn bugger all in school anyway, the “misspelling” is not surprising. (FFS many posters on this blog misspell words that DON’T have an American version!)


      • 79
        Monsieur Francois says:

        If you type the word “wellies” into MS Word, the spellcheckbot asks if you really meant “willies”.


  18. 40
    MAD FRANKIE HADDOCK son of COD says:

    Not since 1939 has Britain stood alone against the Axis of Evil which was Europe !
    Well done Dave ! for your Churchillian stance
    No British PM since Maggie has stood up to these Krauts and Frog munching surrender monkeys !

    Can one of these Bleating Sheep reporters just ask any Labour minister “What would you have done smart arse”


    • 50


      Isn’t that a bit strong, Frankie?

      We shall fart on the beaches, we shall fart on the landing grounds, we shall fart in the fields and in the streets, we shall fart in the hills. We shall never surrender!


      • 63
        annette curton says:

        Never before in the field of political conflict have so few screwed everything up for so many.


        • 66
          MAD FRANKIE HADDOCK son of COD says:

          Never in the history of monetary conflict
          Has so much been paid by so many
          to benefit so few !


      • 64
        MAD FRANKIE HADDOCK son of COD says:

        Then our aristocracy will negotiate their own position , to save their own scrawny necks
        and shit on all of us !


  19. 44
    annette curton says:

    His dress was considered by some to be overly formal for a Max Mosely party.


  20. 45
    The Sleeper says:

    I fail to understand why the bloody French still lust after getting into bed with the Germans. Twice in the last century,France was royally fucked by Germany…..and saved by Britain (and Allies)…..yet they still can’t fucking forget about Agincourt.

    Just wait a while, my dear Froggies…’re about to get fucked by Germany again.


  21. 49
    Ivor Biggun says:

    That bastard David Cameron !!

    Now Dave has given a clear message to his rich banker buddies by not endorsing the transaction tax, they now feel they have carte blanche to fleece the poorest with Dave’s blessing. Conservatism in action!


    • 52
      Stinkfinger says:

      How would the banks have made up the difference if they had been taxed by the EU?
      Higher charges perhaps?
      Fuck the banks but also fuck the EU for wanting us to put our money where their mouth is to save the Euro.


    • 53
      The Sleeper says:

      Do you suffer from a penile inferiority complex?


    • 56
      annette curton says:

      As a pragmatist I would rather have rich banker buddies than the desperate ‘poor’ ones coming up with yet another excuse as to why I/We have to bail them out yet again courtesy of the European Economic Union.


    • 59
      annette curton says:

      As a pragmatist I would much rather have rich banker buddies than the desperate ‘poor’ ones coming up with yet another excuse as to why I/We have to bail them out yet again courtesy of the Europ@an Economic Union.


  22. 54
    not a machine says:

    I dont know wether the claims about the empty chair are not just in reality port at the trough , noting that as yet the reason for the summit ie the eurozone has not got its bazooka , seems sensible to me that as one of the best financial centres in the world , that as you are not guarenteed the outcomes ,before you hold back your veto . Surely isnt there a case for a failure of mercozy to offer somthing of an above board before explaining how they are going to resolve the debt .

    dont forget the combined debt of the eurozone , is enough to call it insolvent despite the prospect of re financing at lower interest rates , no returns for savers , continued high taxes , expense of not having triple AAA , they may be piling on the pressure , that hwoever still has cred for the PM as they have placed there own internal pressures yet , the post summit joy de veve ,ay be as short as van rumpouys answers


  23. 65
    Sick of being of stalked by scrounging Edinburgh dogshite. Time wasters. says:

    Self regulation? Would you trust the MP troughers who abuse the expenses system to self regulate their greed? Too many greedy guts in power. Sometimes you have to impose rules.


  24. 67
    MAD FRANKIE HADDOCK son of COD says:

    Sky news poll !

    Should we have a referendum on staying in Europe ?
    13% NO
    87% YES !


  25. 68
    TheRealJoePublic says:

    Is that the smell of another quango being birthed, or did Dave just forget to put the bins out ??.


  26. 71
    David Cameron is King says:

    The Eurozone is going down the pan. We will weather the storm. You can’t put a price on sovereignty and democracy. At last we have a Leader who has courage and decency to stand up for his country.
    David Cameron was also courageous to help democratize Libya and secure a good business relationship with the country.
    Dave can take on the undemocratic, poisonous Unions and win.


  27. 73

    Read between the lines. Sounds like he’s seeking to do the same thing in the future, just in the public sector rather than the private sector.


  28. 81
    gs_schweik says:

    That Francis Ingham……..
    Major Ducos? From Sharpe?


  29. 82
    (I've been renamed) DA-Notice says:

    It’s apologise, and I thank you not the mealy mouthed and verbose ‘I should like to thank you'; twat.


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Find out more about PLMR

Rob Colvile reviews Russell Brand’s new book:

“Oddly, the person I feel sorriest for isn’t Brand himself – although he certainly comes across as a rather pitiable figure, projecting his own brokenness on to the world around him – but Johann Hari. Drummed out of Fleet Street for plagiarism, the former Independent columnist has washed up as “my mate Johann, who’s been doing research for this book”. For a genuinely talented polemicist, it would have been a humbling experience to have to treat this sub-undergraduate dross as the scintillating wisdom of a philosopher-king.”

Mycroft says:

Have you read the last bit of Animal Farm?

You know where the animals are looking through the Farmhouse window?

My TV screen was that window at lunch-time today.

Be careful, the sudden self-congratulatory tone, the slightly pudgy outline of indulgence and you become exactly what you should despise.

The jolly face of the Quisling Cameron poses for your camera has mesmerised and deceived you, you who were once not so deceived.

You were no firebrand, you were a damp squib in my opinion, sorry.

You need a damned good kick up the ahse!

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