DIARY: Two industry hopefuls take mail-room route

Hold the back page! Cracknell and Eccleshare start new venture together.

But before Campaign gets another of those irritating calls from the photocopier salesman who purports to be "a mate of Trevor Beattie's" wanting their phone number, this isn't a reunion of the double act which ran Ammirati Puris Lintas London for a period in the late 90s.

This time it's Tom Eccleshare, the son of William, the incoming head of Young & Rubicam Europe, and Lucy Cracknell, the daughter of Bates UK's executive creative director, Andrew.

Both are getting their first direct experiences of the industry in the humble surroundings of the Bates post room. In doing so they follow in the footsteps of some of the biggest names in advertising, who got their first break loading the mail trolley.

Peter Warren, the former chairman of Ogilvy & Mather, well remembers his stint in the post room at the then Mather & Crowther. "All the directors had bells on their desks which they rang when they wanted a messenger. It got me noticed -although it may have had something to do with the loud check suit I wore which made me look like a bookie."

Peter Mead, the Abbott Mead Vickers BBDO founding partner, remembers his own experiences, which bear testament to the Nietzchean philosophy that what doesn't destroy you makes you stronger. As a teenager in the mail room at the then SH Benson a long 40 years ago, one of his jobs was to risk life and limb riding pillion on the motorcycles delivering metal ad blocks along Fleet Street.

"Roaring down Kingsway at 65 mile an hour was a character-building experience, he recalls with a shudder. "Thank goodness I never fell off."

From Nick Bell to Lord Bell, it seems Cracknell and Eccleshare juniors are starting off in good company.

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