Diary: CDP's reunion all set to be a story-fest

campaignlive.co.uk, Friday, 31 July 2009 12:00AM

Diary's mind is spinning at the thought of all the anecdotes being swapped at what's likely to be the agency reunion to top them all.

Next year will be the 50th anniversary of the founding of Collett Dickenson Pearce. And a couple of its former senior staffers are marking the occasion by bringing together every surviving staffer who ever worked at the place.

Some 200 have promised to be there - and up to 300 more are being tracked down.

Although CDP - soon to be rebranded as Dentsu London - opened its doors for business on All Fools' Day 1960, 15 April is the chosen date."Our work was always late," Mike Everett, a one-time CDP creative group head and one of the reunion organisers, tells us. "So a two-week delay is in the best CDP tradition."

Meanwhile, ex-staff will be invited to post their best tales on a website, as well as examples they have of CDP's work. Sadly, there's no comprehensive archive for the agency that proclaimed "Happiness is a cigar called Hamlet" or told drinkers "Heineken refreshes the parts other beers cannot reach".

And the stories? Well, there's hundreds. John Stuart, the former operations director, remembers the time Frank Lowe, then CDP's managing director, thought it wise not to fire a production man after learning he was related to the great train robber Ronnie Biggs.

Or when John O'Donnell (pictured), the creative director, was ordered to warn his staff about their behaviour after a security man caught one of them in flagrante delicto with a woman staffer. O'Donnell circulated a memo saying the more rumpy-pumpy the better, because it got the creative juices flowing.

For more details of the reunion, visit www.cdpcelebration.com.

This article was first published on campaignlive.co.uk

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