Thursday, June 04, 2009

Elections: My place in history

IT’S election day and we’re all atwitter about our coverage.
Our planning sessions have been all about laptops, mobiles, 3G cards and remote access but the fact remains that it still takes our dedicated team of editors and reporters to make it happen. Have a look later to see how they’ve done.
I got to thinking about my first election as a reporter, covering the count here in Chelmsford when Norman St John-Stevas (now Lord St John of Fawsley) won the seat for the second time in a year in October 1974.
I was excited to be asked by the local agency reporter to help out on the night and had visions of my quotes gobbled up and spat out by the Press Association and turning up in Nationals galore.
And how did I spend the crucial hour or so before the result was announced?

Camped out in the only phone box next to Shire Hall pretending to use the phone so no-one else could phone the result and so bagging us (or, rather, him) the premium paid for getting in first.
Dontcha just love journalism…