CAMPAIGN DIARY: Assaggi

Anyone who has tried to book a table at Assaggi in West London will know the familiar feeling of waiting on the phone for ten minutes only to be told that there are no tables free for another six weeks.

Anyone who has tried to book a table at Assaggi in West London will

know the familiar feeling of waiting on the phone for ten minutes only

to be told that there are no tables free for another six weeks.



But if you work in the Bates group, think twice before eating there -

especially if your lunch date is a Campaign hack. For what had started

off as a couple of coincidences has turned into a particularly insidious

trend.



It began in late 1997, when Campaign’s acting deputy editor, John Tylee,

had lunch at Assaggi with the then managing director of Bates Dorland,

Chris Clark. Unfortunately, just weeks later, Clark was sent to New York

in a reshuffle.



A one-off mishap? Sadly, no. The Tylee curse continued with an ill-fated

Assaggi lunch with the former creative director Tim Ashton, just weeks

before the sun set on his career at 141 Westbourne Terrace.



The poisoned baton was then passed on to Campaign’s Direct editor,

Eleanor Trickett. A dinner at Assaggi with the chairman of 141

Communications, Peter Crossing, was followed by his resignation a

fortnight later. Then lunch with the managing director of Bates

Communications, Karl Schuster, led to his resignation the following

week. Finally, Zenith Media’s Yvonne Scullion was Trickett’s third

victim, resigning weeks after their lunch.



Andrew Cracknell, now Bates UK’s executive creative director, had lunch

with Tylee a fortnight ago. We suggest you start sending your CVs to

Toby Hoare now.



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