To BEIS or Not to BEIS


The new Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy has the acronym BEIS, which no one is quite sure how to pronounce. BEIS was the compromise name agreed by civil servants and Number 10 after high-level talks when Theresa May took office. Some senior figures wanted the colloquial term for the department to be BEIStrat, in order to emphasise the importance of Industrial Strategy. That name was however dismissed as sounding like some sort of Ukrainian telecoms firm whose flyer you’d find on the window of a newsagents. Mandarins then suggested the name BEISt, pronounced “beast“. That had the advantage of sexing up Greg Clark’s slightly unsexy department, however it was rejected by the powers that be as open to ridicule. And lo, the “t” was dropped, leaving them with BEIS. A name that will be forged in history…

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Quote of the Day

Rowan Atkinson tells The Times

“All jokes about religion cause offence, so it’s pointless apologising for them. You should really only apologise for a bad joke. On that basis, no apology is required.”


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