Monday 19 November 2018

Sad to say, end of Paisley is no reason to chuckle

James Downey

BILL Deedes, former editor of the Daily Telegraph and the model (though he denied it) for William Boot in Evelyn Waugh's hilarious lampoon on journalism 'Scoop', died not long ago. He was 94-years-old and had continued to work until a few weeks before his death.

I knew him well, both as a Conservative MP and when he edited the Telegraph. He took an interest in Northern Ireland and waxed lyrical about the Provisional IRA ceasefire negotiated by Willie Whitelaw in 1972. He viewed one of the IRA leaders, David O'Connell, as "the new Michael Collins".

That was the way much of the British establishment thought. Never mind Brian Faulkner, John Hume, Jack Lynch, Liam Cosgrave, Britannia would deal with them, but she would also deal with those she thought could deliver.

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