Peter Bingle gets stuck into another piece defending his lunching
It turns out that the Tory lobbyist does care about the APPC-PRCA merger after all.
When certain sections of the public affairs industry were gripped by the APPC-PRCA merger plan getting the green light, one figure was keen to stress his total indifference.
“Nobody cares! More fun watching paint dry,” stated a certain Peter Bingle. “APPC totally hopeless. The empire of Francis Ingham grows ever larger. He is a modern Tiberius without the flaws!”
But a few weeks is clearly a long time in lobbying. So less than a month after the verdict, it turns out that the former Bell Pottinger lobbying chief does care after all.
“In celebration of the merger between the APPC and the PRCA, I thought the timing was propitious for an article in defence of lobbying,” he has now written.
In his piece on the PRCA website, the man once dubbed ‘never knowingly under-lunched’ returns to one of his favourite themes, asking: “Why is it wrong for a public affairs practitioner to take out a politician for lunch? Journalists do it all the time. Bizarre.”
He also makes his familiar plea for lobbyists to be less shy about what they do: “The old swagger has too often been replaced with a heads-down approach to dealing with journalists and commentators. Perhaps there is a fear that a high profile will lead to unwanted media attention? If so, I hope that the newly created Public Affairs Board will set about restoring the industry’s self-confidence.”
Unusually for Bingle, rather than annoying everyone his piece seems to have garnered some support from some senior industry figures. On LinkedIn, Gavin Devine called it a “timely article about our much-misunderstood craft” while Kevin McKeever wrote: “Not always a fan of PB, but well written and rightly argued piece!”
What’s going on? How long until Bingle is losing friends and alienating people again?
Mr Stakeholder gives him until lunchtime…