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A shaw thing

Sam Shaw is a reporter on Money Marketing

My first week in my new role as deputy news editor seems a bit manic, not helped by the MM newsdesk being rather light on bodies due to illness, holiday or the infamous floating conference that is PIMS, which I have somehow managed to avoid for three consecutive years. My esteemed colleague Paul McMillan is not so blessed. Unlucky, Paul.

I meet Nucleus’ ever jovial David Ferguson for curry and beers on Tuesday night, where we put the (wrap) world to rights. I awake without a hangover so we must have been doing a lot of talking, which is a welcome change as I have realised that TV cameras, hot lights and too much boozing/ schmoozing the night before is not a pleasant combo. So the erstwhile MM Tuesday nights out have been culled lately in favour of looking fresh(er) for filming MMTV.

Wednesday is topped by a welcome interview with industry legend Ken Davy and tailed with a private dining experience courtesy of NU at the Charlotte Street Hotel. Apart from a minor panic when I realise I have left my ring in the loos and the cleaners put it somewhere safe, it was an appreciated evening in the company of Messrs Barral, Gay and Evans.

Requests for help on how to news edit: Enough to test anyone’s patience. Pints consumed: I held my own.

Annie Shaw is a freelance financial journalist

I take the Savoy’s platform to give a vote of thanks to the sponsors of the Personal Finance and Savings Readership Awards hosted by Charterhouse Communications. Guest speaker Garry Richardson of Radio Five Live’s Sportsweek confides that the assembly of financial suits looks a little sombre and primes me when to laugh during his address. I take the task seriously and Yorkshire Building Society’s Tanya Jackson has to resist gagging me with a napkin.

Also present to garner glassware for the office mantlepiece is the Tiggerish Hargreaves Lansdown pension oracle Tom McPhail. The goodnatured McPhail tells me he has but two demands in his modest life. Please don’t ask if he is rich since the flotation of HL last month. The answer is that “everyone at HL got shares” so we can take that as a yes. And please don’t stroke his facial fungus. The bearded McPhail is alarmed at the number of people who, unbidden, stroke his newly hirsute physiog. He confides, however, that he is prepared to make an exception to the latter request in the case of beautiful women.

On to the annual dinner for investment writers, hosted by HBOS. The venue is the London Aquarium, a curious choice for a gathering of bankers. Dining while surrounded by sharks is unnerving for any journalist, to say the least. The fish didn’t seem to mind one bit, however.

Fresh OJs: Two (to avoid falling off awards stage); Pimms: Two (to make up for it) Champagne: Just the one glass but it was lovely.

Esther Shaw is deputy personal finance editor at the Independent on Sunday

In an already overly busy week, splitting myself between the Saturday and Sunday Money sections at the Independent in my new plate-spinning role, I was distinctly unamused to find myself in the Charing Cross A&E department on Tuesday night after doing a little damage on the netball court.

“Case of the flu, is it?” quipped the young male nurse as I limped pathetically into the room. I think my look told him that I was most definitely not in the mood for jokes at my expense.

But at least it is just a torn calf muscle and not a torn Achilles, as was first suspected. I am feeling a lot happier and a little more au fait with my crutches. The doctor clearly had his doubts, though, as I hobbled out unsteady on my new pins as he hurried to thrust a leaflet into my hand entitled, Advice Sheet for Use of Crutches.

Maybe, as AWD Chase de Vere’s Anna Bowes pointed out, “it serves you right for being healthy and playing netball” although I rather more subscribe to Annie Shaw’s ever-practical view that I should be grateful that it was my leg that was damaged and not my arm. “At least you can still lift a glass of wine to your lips,” she says. Ah, yes, small mercies.

Amount of minutes that Nationwide’s Steve Blore spent in the toilets on Friday night at the England v Brazil game at Wembley chatting to Sam Dunn, who was stuck in the office until the early hours: More than you might imagine.

Number of Tube gates I have managed to get myself trapped in with my crutches: Several.


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