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John Caruth
Northern Irelnd
Retired journalist with a forever young feeling
Interests: Reading, blogging, walking, talking, music and that means Bob Dylan, John Hiatt, Marshall Crenshaw and all the oldies like Buddy, Elvis, Johnny and talking again ... keep smiling
Recent Activity
I still remember when the Telegraph decided to go multi section and I was asked to prepare a dummy edition. I led the second section with sport because I thought of it as news in shorts and it was a topical/newsy thing with possibly great pictures. That idea was rejected. Features had to lead the second section. Sport would still be on the back and despite my best to put them in more visible places efforts BMDs and TV were buried in the paper. I always remember saying that the paper would have to be thicker, more pages. That didn't happen either. The result was the scheme was abandoned not long after it was started but with a heavy loss in sales. Older readers couldn't find the TV and they thought we hadn't published the BMDs! A small pagination when separated does not appear good value. The boss at the time wanted to modernise the paper but it was for a new readership who weren't buying it and didn't either.
Toggle Commented Sep 2, 2017 on MR. HACK 153 at TheCopyboys
Apologies Roy, but you were quoted in a very comprehensive news story by Noel McAdam who produced a second story when Tony Blair came up with sympathy too. The 'official obituary' was being done by someone else you know well and when I asked him about sending me a copy of it, he replied:".... I think it was a matter of being overtaken by events" ... so no official obit was done, it was felt possibily by the power that be that coverage done was enough. Sad decision, I thought.
Toggle Commented Apr 8, 2017 on Mr. Hack 150 at TheCopyboys
Yes. The building Frames used was previously Graphic Plates where photographic images were supplied to the Telegraph and I often had to go there to seek help from the manager Billy Britten, a real decent gentleman of the old school
Toggle Commented Apr 4, 2017 on Mr. Hack 150 at TheCopyboys
Not sure this has worked the way I designed it ... so it may disappear to be worked on further.
Toggle Commented Jan 3, 2017 on Mr Hack 149 at TheCopyboys
Yes. Sad news indeed about Austin. I remember him with fondness for his generosity of spirit and he was a gentleman of high order. I'm away at the moment but will find a tribute for publication here if one puts one up before I get back.
Toggle Commented Dec 5, 2016 on MR HACK 148 at TheCopyboys
I've just put up a photo of the cover of Peter McMullan's new book, Casting Back - Sixty Years of Fishing and Writing (about it) in the Belfast Telegraph. Old hands will know Peter whose other work pastime was writing about rugby and sport. Good luck with the sales, Peter. Ps ... when looking at the blog yesterday I couldn't help but spot an amazon advertisement for another book by another old friend, Ivan Little ... The promo for it read "From one of Northern Ireland's most recognisable and popular journalists comes this frank and entertaining memoir. Charting his entrance into the world of local journalism, and covering his breaking of major news stories, Ivan Little presents a telling glimpse at life from behind the microphone."
Toggle Commented Nov 8, 2016 on MR HACK 148 at TheCopyboys
We got another email and the result of it is the change to the current Mr Hack and the introduction of another photo and caption....The email from our good friend and old colleague Eddie Sterling jnr:Hi, John, Colin McMullan and I paid a visit to the Ulster Folk and Transport Museum today (Wed). We enjoyed the Titanic exhibits, and the trams etc, but really we were there to see the restored Belfast Telegraph Derry van. I remember seeing the van in the Tele garage in Stephen Street, looking very forlorn, covered in dust and pigeon droppings. One of Colin's uncles - Stewart Duffin - drove the van for many years (remember Dan Duffin, he was related to Colin). Colin told me that, when Stewart retired, a colleague had worked out that, in his time, he had driven the equivalent of to the Moon and back. That's more than 475,000 miles! Great yarn. I have attached a couple of pix. On my behalf would you cobble together a few pars for The Copyboys .... Mission accomplished and thanks for remembering us. Cheers.
Toggle Commented Oct 6, 2016 on MR. HACK 147 at TheCopyboys
Sorry, but I like the blog to carry details and stories about newspapers etc like the one above I've just put up a moment or so ago. In yesterday's Daily Telegraph the lead item in the Features section carried the headline, All life is here, in our obituaries and it was a good, entertaining piece by the paper's obituaries editor, Andrew M. Brown - about changes to the paper's obituaries page brought about 30 years ago by Hugh Massingberd, appointed to the post by the then editor, Max Hastings. My delay in getting it up here, or a link to it was caused by the the paper seemingly to have stopped having a Search panel on its website. If there is one, I can't see or find it. By other search means I found the piece and here's a link to it: http://www.telegraph.co.uk/obituaries/2016/08/31/all-life-is-here-30-years-of-telegraph-obituaries/ Read and enjoy.
Toggle Commented Sep 1, 2016 on MR HACK 146 at TheCopyboys
Anne ... you are welcome whenever and wherever you wish to comment! Confusion is part and parcel of life around the copyboys and no doubt our Chairman will be happy to explain.
Toggle Commented Aug 8, 2016 on Mr HACK 145 at TheCopyboys
Fim Section 2 is open for comments ...
Toggle Commented Jul 28, 2016 on FILM SECTION - 2 at TheCopyboys
Hope someone comes up with something fast... I know that I need help dealing with the modern world. Been having trouble with my mobile phone ... trouble getting access to part of it anyway and when I rang for help I ended up being baffled when we had to spell out codes and things in very small print and was almost baffled by the use of the system designed to make words more understood ... b for bravo, e for extra sort of thing ... I kept picking the wrong words which left me and the person helping totally confused. Help needed soon.
Toggle Commented Jul 5, 2016 on Mr HACK 145 at TheCopyboys
HARRY ROWLETTE: A TRIBUTE Been trying through phone calls and emails to create or organise a tribute on the blog to the late Harry Rowlette and have failed because people all fondly remembered Harry, but could not provide a history of memories. Then, one person made a remark that I thought was an admirable tribute to the man and thought that would suit for us here: Truth to tell that although Harry was a colleague for many years I know virtually nothing about him. He brings to my mind a man who could only be described as a gentleman and who was always immaculately dressed.
Toggle Commented Jun 21, 2016 on Mr HACK 144 at TheCopyboys
Got another email, this time from Michael McRitchie and it has a photo with it, taken by Stanley Matchett in 1971 when he was a photographer with the Mirror here. The photo is now up in Journos at Large album. The story, which can be read in the photo was written by Eddie McIlwaine who at his ripe old age is still operating and producing stories and a column for the Telegraph. Here's Michael's email: Guten Tag Herr Blogmeister, Stanley recalled taking some photos of my aircraft many, many years ago. Here's the Mirror from April 30, 1971, bylined Story by Eddie McIlwaine, Pictures by Stanley. My old log book has several flights that month but the photo sortie was probably April 10 and Stanley was being flown by Pat Bott, who was then chief photographer at Shorts in Belfast. Please could you forward this as I don't have Stanley's email addy? Really enjoyed seeing so many once familiar faces, still can't believe that 48 yrs have passed since I walked out from that back gate. Best wishes Michael
Toggle Commented May 15, 2016 on Mr HACK 144 at TheCopyboys
Fascinating piece in today's Daily Telegraph on a James Nesbit TV murder drama, The Secret which is based around Deric Henderson's book on the double murders by the dentist now serving life along with his mistress. It goes on UTV later this month. http://www.telegraph.co.uk/tv/2016/04/18/the-secret-meet-the-killers-who-hid-under-a-saintly-veneer/
Toggle Commented Apr 18, 2016 on Mr. HACK 143 at TheCopyboys
Glancing through the Writers and Their Typewriters I see that George Bernard Show used four typewriters - Bar-Lock; Remington portable no. 1; Smith Premier (Remington); Remington Noiseless Portable. Encouraged by the response so far, we have created a new photo album called Famous Typewriters and have put up pic of the machines used by Brendan Behan, George Burns, Mickey Spillane, Orson Welles and one that our Chairman and Glidden Hammon No. 2.
Toggle Commented Feb 22, 2016 on MR HACK 142 at TheCopyboys
I have contacted a journo on the NL to send me any tribute/obit they put up for Eddie ...
Toggle Commented Jan 13, 2015 on MR HACK No. 133 at TheCopyboys
Some good news ...Our friend and regular contributor Michael McRitchie has come through his heart op and is making a good recovery. He sent us an email which read, in part:"... I drew perilously close to the edge but had my bypass op. on Friday 5th with incredible results, walking alone from RVH front door to car park only six days later. A week ago today Intensive Care staff woke me from my 24-hour postop slumber, this afternoon I was pottering around our garden for an hour and feel terrific after two hours in the sun and the air." That's all good news from Michael and we look forward to him contributing to the blog soon.
Toggle Commented Sep 14, 2014 on MR HACK No. 130 at TheCopyboys
Something bizarre is happening in the blog with comments... Alastair has put up a comment after Derek's but when I see it, I don't see any other comments which should still be visible ... I am putting this up to see what happens.
Toggle Commented Jun 29, 2014 on MR HACK No. 128 at TheCopyboys
Ps ... to our Chairman ... we have managed to reopen the Film Section where you can now put up yours tribute to Eli Wallach who has died after a long and illustrious career playing the baddie in westerns.
Toggle Commented Jun 29, 2014 on FILM Section at TheCopyboys
Shopping, as one does on a Saturday in Belfast ... and in M&S when I almost fell over a man who appeared before me. I greeted him warmingly because I knew his face, even without the thick dark hair he used to wear. We shook hands and he said 'Hello John ... you don't look as well as you used to!'. We laughed and parted and I still don't know his name. What I do remember is where he worked - it was then called the Klishograph (sic) which later became known to us as the Process Dept. Strangely, even though I can't remember his name I do recall three other men who worked with him - Joe Roy, Bertie Glenn and their boss, a lovely gentleman called Billy Britain. If there is anyone out there, even old NGA workers who can fill in missing names, we would appreciate it if they made contact and put up their memories, too.
Toggle Commented Jun 29, 2014 on MR HACK No. 128 at TheCopyboys
We seem to be back to normal again ... apologies for the problem, caused by me clicking a wrong box! I have now unclicked the box which free us to comment here rather than on Twitter or Facebook ...
Toggle Commented Jun 29, 2014 on MR HACK No. 128 at TheCopyboys
Apologies are due to our Chairman, it seems ... I didn't see the joke and edited in laureate. It seems I deserve to be lashed with a lariat.
Toggle Commented Jun 21, 2014 on MR HACK No. 128 at TheCopyboys
Just off to bed but saw your comment and have corrected your spelling in two places and put the verse in italic .... Laureate and something else.
Toggle Commented Jun 20, 2014 on MR HACK No. 128 at TheCopyboys
A great reply to Alastair ... he does seem to pick on you quite a bit! Your answers are always better than the jibes.
Toggle Commented Feb 18, 2014 on MR. HACK 126 at TheCopyboys
I got this email from you ... thought the man you praised yesterday fixed your problems?
Toggle Commented Jan 8, 2014 on Christmas Mr Hack at TheCopyboys