Reports of Boris Johnson’s intention to knight his own father have attracted much attention this week. This jaw-dropper of a story may provide perfect cover for Johnson to sneak through some other controversial nominees in his long-awaited resignation honours list.
The Guardian reports today that Johnson has, for a second time, nominated Paul Dacre, the former long-standing Daily Mail editor, for a peerage. Dacre, who remains editor-in-chief of DMG Media, the newspaper’s publisher, is understood to have been rejected for a peerage last autumn by the House of Lords appointments commission. (Johnson also apparently tried to install Dacre as the chairman of Ofcom, the broadcast regulator, before that proposal was nipped in the bud.)
In some ways, the prospect of Lord Dacre is already seen as a given (in an apparent slip of the tongue, the BBC chairman Richard Sharp made reference to a “Lord Dacre” while appearing before MPs last month). The new gossip that’s gripped Fleet Street this week concerns Ted Verity, the Daily Mail‘s current editor. Rumour has it that Johnson would like to bestow a knighthood upon Verity.
Arise, Sir Ted? Watch this space to find out whether this rumour amounts to anything.