Monday, 29 June 2015

Daily Mail looking for trainee artists

Here are a couple of good opportunities at the Daily Mail for trainee artists. One job is on the sportsdesk in London, the other is in Glasgow. Be quick though, applications close on Thursday.

Friday, 26 June 2015

Have a crack at this week's newsquiz

Well done to Michael Brown who scored a very impressive 20 in last week's newsquiz. Other double figure scores included Alex Murphy and James Restall with 17, Charlie Taverner, 15, and Matt Cornish 13. A special mention to US journalist Kelly McLaughlin who got into double figures (10) for the first time since she returned to America in January. Here's this week's quiz. As usual, a possible 25 points to be won. Let me know how you get on.

The Daily Mail reports on the chaos in Calais (Question 1)
1. A strike by 100 workers of which company forced the suspension of services through the Channel Tunnel on Tuesday? Bonus: In a separate incident, cabbies overturned cars and blocked the Paris ring road with burning tyres in a protest over which company? Bonus: Who tweeted from the protests: 'They've ambushed our car and are holding our driver hostage. they're beating the cars with metal bats. this is France?? I'm safer in Baghdad.'?
2.  Which gift from President Joachim Gauck failed to impress the Queen on her state visit to Germany?
3. What has been removed for sale by Amazon, EBay and WalMart?
4. There was a car bomb attack and a raid by six gunmen on which country's parliament this week?
5. What number has Andy Murray been seeded for Wimbledon? Bonus: Who is the top woman seed?
6. Taylor Swift persuaded Apple to change its payment policy to artists after she refused to allow the company to stream her album? What is the album called?
7. Why did Tom Osborne cause a stir on the Northern Line?
8. A 35-year-old woman in Australia was found with damage to the muscles and nerves in her lower legs so severe it took four days on a drip to recover. What caused the damage?
9. Gardener Nathan Greenway died on a Hampshire estate after handling a poisonous plant. What is the plant’s common name?
10. Who said of his job: ‘I am paid to challenge mediocrity, failure and complacency’?
11. Pilot Romain Jantot found a stowaway clinging to the wing of his light plane during a flight in French Guiana. What was it?
12. Why was Nicholas Salvador in the headlines?
13. Composer James Horner, who died in a plane crash in California, won an Oscar in 1997 for the best original song in a film. Name the song. Bonus: Patrick MacNee also died this week. He was most famous for playing John Steed in which television series?
14. Partick Thistle's new football mascot caused a negative reaction on social media for being 'too scary'. What is the mascot called?
15. Headmistress Anne Lakey was jailed for how many years after being found guilty of indecent assault on two pupils? 
16. Two public schoolboys from Perse School in Cambridge were fined for stealing relics from where?
17. Who is to replace Mark Austin as the main presenter of ITV’s News At Ten?
18. Where would you find e-cigarette, twerking, meh and FLOTUS?
Bonus: What does FLOTUS stand for?
19. Which creature which 'posed a very real threat to the public’ went on the run in Nottingham after escaping from its enclosure near Worksop?
20. The Dalai Lama will be making his debut at which event this weekend?

Answers here

Friday, 19 June 2015

Give this week's newsquiz a go

Last week’s individual top scorer was newsquiz veteran Lydia Willgress with 15 points. Chris Lennon and Alex Murphy were joint second with 13. The top collective score was 14 by my mates in the Plough on Friday night - well done Nicky, Les, Kevin and Amanda. The Batstones scored 11 but as Lucy was away, that should really count as 11 to Adam. Here’s this week’s quiz. As usual there are 25 points to be won. Let me know how you get on.
The Guardian's front page on the Greek crisis (Question 19)
1. How was Talha Asmal killed? Bonus: Islamic convert Abdul Hakim from High Wycombe was killed in Kenya. What was his name before he converted? Bonus: Three missing sisters trying to get to Syria with their nine children are from which British city?
2. Police are investigating reports that a gang dressed as waiters tried to snatch British children from a hotel at which Cyprus resort?
3. Labour's leadership hopefuls Andy Burnham, Yvette Cooper, Liz Kendall and Jeremy Corbyn went head to head in the first live television debate of the contest. Where was the debate held? Bonus: What did Burnham say was the 'biggest change' that the party needed to make?
4. Republican Jeb Bush announced he is standing as a candidate for the US Presidency. What relation is he to ex-president George W Bush?
5. Tigers, lions, bears, wolves and a hippopotamus were among the wild animals roaming which city after floods destroyed its zoo?
6. Wayne Rooney scored the winner against Slovenia in England’s 3-2 victory in the European Championships but who scored the other two English goals? Bonus: England have now played six games in their qualifying group. How many have they won?
7. Mel B and Louis Walsh are being replaced by which two new judges on the X Factor? Half a point for each.
8. Why was the Sussex v Surrey T20 cricket game at Arundel abandoned?
9. What happened to Stannis Baratheon, Queen Selyse and Jon Snow this week?
10. How many extra balls will be introduced to the National Lottery from October?
11. Which newspaper apologised for its story about a balcony collapse in California that left five Irish students dead?
12. What was the rate of inflation in the UK in May?
13. Researchers at Aberdeen University claimed that eating what every day lowered the risk of dying from heart disease by 25 per cent and suffering a stroke by 23 per cent?
14. Why was Alberto Salazar in the headlines?
15. How did Matthew Dick propose to his girlfriend?
16. Nine people were shot dead in a church in which city? Bonus: What was the name of the 21-year-old man arrested in connection with the shootings?
17. How were Jodie Kidd, Guy Martin, Suzie Perry, Philip Glenister and Demot O'Leary linked this week?
18. Why did Rachel Dolezal step down as head of a chapter of the African-American civil rights organisation NAACP?
19. Greece has less than two weeks to strike a deal with its creditors or face defaulting on its existing loan repayment to the IMF. How much is the debt?
20. The Foo Fighters cancelled their slot as the Friday headline act at this year’s Glastonbury after Dave Grohl fell of a stage in Sweden and broke his leg. Who has been booked to replace them?

Answers here

Friday, 12 June 2015

Test your news knowledge with this week's quiz

Last week's newsquiz must have been a little trickier than usual. The top individual score was 15, submitted by Chris Lennon and Damon Wake. They just pipped Sophie Jamieson on 14.5 and Alex Murphy on 13.5. The best team score was by Ailsa Leslie and Christopher Dean with 19 while the Batstones clocked up 'a rather woeful' 12. Here's this week's questions. As usual 25 points up for grabs. Let me know how you get on.

The Sun reports on the Bradford school stabbing (Question 16)
1. Which bill was passed in the Commons by a vote of 544 to 53 - a majority of 491? Bonus: Harriet Harman told David Cameron in the Commons: 'You won the election, you’re the Prime Minister. You don’t need to do ranting and sneering and _________. ‘ What is the missing word? Bonus: Another female politician, this time at the European Council summit in Brussels, accused Cameron of being ’irate, almost ill-mannered’. Name her.
2. Why was 23-year-old Eleanor Hawkins in the headlines?
3. George Osborne announced that the Government will be selling its stake in which company - even though it will be at a £7 billion loss? 

4. A poll of 220,000 people voted for the robin to be Britain's national bird ... but what came second? 
5. A boy called Hans, born in the German city of Bremen in 1929, went on to sell more than 100 million albums and win 17 platinum and 206 gold disc awards. Who is he?
6. Dick Costolo is stepping down as chief executive of which company?
7. Who compared himself to the Harry Potter character Lord Voldemort - 'the one everybody wants to pretend never lived’.?
8. John Prescott was banned from driving for how long after being caught doing 60mph in a 50mph zone in his Jaguar in Lincolnshire? Bonus: Who else was banned from driving this week - for speeding at 60mph in a 50mph zone on the A3 in Esher, Surrey?
9. Which company announced plans to reduce its staff globally by 10 percent, meaning 25,000 jobs could go including 8,000 in the UK? Bonus: Which High Street company announced it is cutting 700 jobs after its merger with the US chain Walgreens?
10. Who filed a lawsuit under his real name, Calvin Broadus Jr, claiming a contract he signed as a brand ambassador for the Pabst Brewing Company entitled him to 10 percent of its $700million sale price?
11. Slaven Bilic and Steve McClaren both landed management jobs at Premier League clubs. Name the clubs. Half point each.
12. His father was a colonel in the Kings Royal Rifle Corps and his mother, Contessa Estelle Marie Carandini di Sarzano, was a noted Edwardian beauty. Who is he?
13. What record did Italian Samantha Cristoforetti set?
14. Prince Harry unveiled the Bastion Memorial which bears the names of all 453 UK people who died in Afghanistan. Where is the memorial?
15. TV regulator Ofcom confirmed it received more than 1,100 complaints about what?
16. What was the name of the Bradford school where 50-year-old supply teacher Vincent Uzomah was stabbed?
17. England's cricketers set a national record at Edgbaston for the highest score in a One Day International. How many did they score? Bonus: A cricketer making the headlines this week played 79 test matches for England, scoring 4,099 runs, seven centuries and taking 256 dismissals. Who is he?
18. Who said Labour had suffered two electoral defeats in five years because 'the party has turned the page backwards rather than turning the page forwards’?
19. NestlĂ©’s attempt to trademark the shape of one of its products received a setback when the advocate general of the European Court of Justice ruled it was not distinctive enough. Which product?
20. Who sent a video message and the offer of concert tickets to Leah Washington after her left leg was amputated following a crash at Alton Towers?
Answers here

Tuesday, 9 June 2015

Mail looking for more trainee journalists

I have spent much of this year helping the Daily Mail and MailOnline recruit trainee journalists … for both the UK and US. Now we are on the look out for more. The Scottish Daily Mail needs trainee reporters, sub-editors, sports subs and a designer. The details are here. Meanwhile You and Weekend Magazine are looking for a sub. Details hereGet in quick though … the deadline is June 20.

Friday, 5 June 2015

This week's newsquiz - 25 points to be won

The early indications were that last week’s quiz was a little easier than usual. Sophie Jamieson continued her high scoring streak with 18, only to be pipped by Michael Owens with an impressive 20. There were some lower scores though - including a couple in single figures. So maybe it wasn't that easy after all and Sophie and Michael were just on the ball. The top team scores were Lydia Willgress and her mum in the pub with 16, the same score as the Batstones. Here’s this week’s quiz - as usual 25 points to be won. Let me know how you get on.

The Herald leads with a tribute to Charles Kennedy (Question 10)
1. Former Fifa official Chuck Blazer admitted being involved in bribery in which two World Cups? Half point for each. Bonus: Chief executive John Delaney claimed the Football Association of Ireland was paid a substantial settlement after which incident?
2. What was the name of the ride at Alton Towers on which two carriages collided leaving four young people seriously hurt?
3. What was the name of the ‘stunt dog’ that did the rope trick on Britain’s Got Talent?
4. Why was BBC reporter Ahmen Khawaja in the headlines?
5. More than 175 people were killed when a petrol station exploded in which city?
6. The mother of Lance Corporal Craig Roberts claimed at an inquest into her son’s death that she was told by a senior officer that a march on Brecon Beacons, on the hottest day of the year, could not be postponed for what reason? Bonus: Where was the inquest being held?
7. What was the three-word headline on the July cover of Vanity Fair magazine?
8. Arsenal’s FA Cup victory means which English team qualifies for a place in the Europa League?
9. Solar Impulse 2, the solar-powered plane attempting to fly around the world using only the sun’s rays, was forced to land in which country because of bad weather?

10. Charles Kennedy who died on Monday was, until last month, MP for which constituency? Bonus: Kennedy succeeded Paddy Ashdown as leader of the Liberal Democrats in which year?
11. Chancellor George Osborne announced that the Government would sell off its final 30 per cent stake in which company? Bonus: The only named project to feel the Osborne axe was a £250,000 research programme, promoted by former Liberal Democrat MP Don Foster, into what?
12. Paris began the removal of 700,000 love locks from which bridge?
13. Harriette Thompson, 92, became the oldest woman to do what?
14. Why was Katherine Chappell in the headlines? 
15. Who lost in the French tennis open at Roland Garros for only the second time in 71 matches?
16. Texan James Boysen became the first person in the world to have what kind of transplant?
17. Who signed off a letter to Prince Charles with ‘I have the honour to remain, Sir, your Royal Highness’s most humble and obedient servant.’? 
18. More than 400 people were killed when the cruise ship Eastern Star capsized on which river? 
19. Former News of the World editor Andy Coulson was acquitted on charges of perjury by the High Court in which city? Bonus: The charges related to Coulson giving evidence during the trial of which politician?
20. Which celebrity couple celebrated the birth of Liberty Rose?

Answers here