Friday, 25 May 2018

Here's the newsquiz: 25 questions to tackle

The top scorer in last week's newsquiz was Jake Hurfurt with a hugely impressive 21. Liz Gerard also posted a good score of 19 and Toby Brown 18. The top team was Gavin Devine and Tony Smith with 16. They did the quiz while covering the Royal Wedding in Windsor and blamed the 5am start for their 'limp' score. Here is today's newsquiz. As usual there are 25 questions about the week. Give it a go and let me know how you get on.
Front page of the week goes to the Manchester Evening News
1. Meghan Markle’s wedding dress was created by Clare Waight Keller who works for which fashion house?
2. The registration plate on the E-type Jag that Prince Harry drove to his wedding reception was E followed by six numbers. What were they?
3. What was the name of the bishop who told Royal Wedding guests: 'I know that the Bible says, and I believe it, that Jesus walked on the water. But I have to tell you, I did not walk across the Atlantic Ocean to get here’?
4. Who said on ITV's Peston on Sunday that the Royal Wedding had inspired him to consider 'tying the knot’ with his partner of 20 years, Reinaldo Avila da Silva?
5. The GDPR, aimed at restricting how companies use personal details, becomes enforceable in all EU countries today. What does GDPR stand for?
6. Irish voters cast their ballots today in a referendum to decide whether to repeal an amendment to the constitution on abortion. What number is the amendment?
7. A Ryanair flight carrying dozens of Irish voters home for the abortion referendum crashed with another plane on the runway which airport?
8. Downing Street confirmed an investigation was under way after Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson held an 18-minute phone call with a prankster claiming to be the prime minister of which country?
9. US President Donald Trump cancelled his meeting with North Korean leader Kim Jong-un saying: 'Sadly, based on the tremendous ____ and open ____ displayed in your most recent statement, I feel it is inappropriate, at this time, to have this long-planned meeting.’ What are the two missing words? Half a point for each
10. A graphic video shown without a warning led to people walking out of what?
11. A Labour motion to have whose salary reduced by £2,400 per year was defeated in the Commons?
12. Who missed the FA Cup Final amid reported problems over renewing his visa?
13. Harry Kane became the youngest ever England World Cup captain. How old is he?
14. The Institute of Cancer Research London said that children who were not exposed to what were more likely to develop leukaemia?
15. Who suggested he might make a return to party politics saying: 'It depends on how long I live doesn’t it?’
16. Tesco announced it was doing what to its apples, potatoes, tomatoes, lemons, other citrus fruit and onions?
17. Liverpool supporters were stranded after tour operator Worldchoice Sports cut flights when controllers at which airport said they could not allocate landing slots?
18. Who apologised to 'anyone who felt uncomfortable or disrespected’ following allegations of sexual misconduct made by eight women?
19. Which company reported a 75 per cent drop in profits and admitted its online capability was behind its competitors and that its website was 'too slow’?
20. A couple, who were convicted of killing their French nanny, were said in court to have a warped fantasy about a former pop star from which band?
21. Why was 38-year-old Emile Cilliers in the headlines?
22. He received a Pulitzer Prize for his 1997 novel American Pastoral, the WH Smith Literary Award in 2001 for The Human Stain and the 2011 Man Booker International award. Who is he? 
23. BBC newsreader Louise Minchin denied accusations of cheating during what?
24. Plans were revealed to build Europe's biggest observation wheel - nicknamed the 'Whey Aye’ - on the banks of which river?
25. What did pop star Ariana Grande reveal she had tattooed behind her left ear?

Answers here

Saturday, 19 May 2018

A big surprise at the Regional Press Awards


All the winners at the Regional Press Awards yesterday

I had a lovely day at the Regional Press Awards in London yesterday. It is always one of the highlights of the year, recognising the excellent work still being carried out by regional journalists and an opportunity to catch up with (increasingly) old friends. Well done to all the winners and nominees, particularly the Manchester Evening News


The paper had a remarkable year, a lot of it born out of the tragic events at the Manchester Arena. It won seven awards, including Campaign of the Year for We Stand Together. You can see all the winners here. Well done too to the Society of Editors for organising it all and to Nick Ferrari, as funny a host as ever. 

It was particularly special for me as I was in for a surprise. I was in France this week and my wife, Pam, told me she had messed up the return flights and we were heading back a day early. And as we were back in time we could go to the Press Awards, she said. Good idea. 

The Likely Lads - two former editors of The Northern Echo, me and Peter Barron
We caught up with old Northern Echo colleagues Peter Barron and Colin Tapping on the stunning roof terrace at the IET in Savoy Place. During the awards lunch I began making notes on the winners. The first award was the Journalists' Charity Award which 'recognises an individual or body that has made an outstanding contribution to journalism and journalists'. Half way through the words of praise by charity chairman Jill Palmer I realised who she was talking about ... it was me. I was very flattered and somewhat astonished. The early return flight was a stitch up so that I could attend, contrived by Pam and Sue Ryan. Thanks to them both and to Cision, the award's sponsors. Afterwards I had a drink in the Wellington on The Strand with old friends and colleagues, including Tony Watson, Pete Clifton, Paul Horrocks, Neil Hodgkinson and Noel Doran. The Regional Press Awards is always a special day out ... but thanks to everyone involved for making yesterday just that little bit more special for me. Really appreciated. 

Pam and me with John Stapleton and Lynn Faulds Wood. I was celebrating the award, he was celebrating Manchester City's remarkable season




Friday, 18 May 2018

Try your hand at this week's newsquiz

The top scorer in last week's newsquiz was Jamie Johnson with 18, a personal best. Other good scores were Toby Brown and Janet Boyle both with 16.5. I am at the Regional Press Awards today, so this week's quiz is published slightly earlier than usual. Give it a go and let me know how you get on. 


The Royal wedding dominates today's front pages (Questions 1-3)

1. What will Doria Ragland’s role be at the Royal Wedding?
2. Meghan Markle will have ten bridesmaids and pageboys who are all under what age?

3. Meghan Markle's bouquet will include which flower, just like all royal brides’ bouquets have done for the last 173 years? 
4. According to Gaza’s health ministry how many protesters against the opening of the US embassy in Jerusalem were killed by Israeli forces?
5. Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar told Theresa May that it is 'an absolute ___ ___ ' that there is no hard Irish border after Brexit. What are the two missing words?

6. Former Labour cabinet minister Tessa Jowell, who died age 70, said her proudest achievement was a programme which led to the creation of 3,500 children’s centres. What is the programme called?
7. Virgin Trains and Stagecoach are to be stripped of their franchise to run the east coast rail service. What is the name of the new company that will operate services from London to Edinburgh?
8. Andrew Parker, director general of MI5, revealed that how many terror plots had been thwarted in the UK since the Westminster Bridge atrocity in March last year?
9. Khamzat Asimov, 20, who stabbed one man to death and injured four others in Paris was a refugee from which country?
10. In which country did a family, including an eight-year-old child, carry out a bomb attack on a police headquarters, a day after another family killed 13 people in suicide bombings?
11. The failure to recommend what led Labour MP David Lammy to call the review by Dame Judith Hackitt into the Grenfell Tower fire 'a betrayal and a whitewash’?
12. He is thought to have killed at least 15 men, most of them strangled by a tie, and hidden their bodies under floorboards at his London homes. Who is he?
13. The deputy governor of the Bank of England Ben Broadbent was accused of using sexist language after saying the economy was entering what phase?
14. Actress Margot Kidder, who died aged 69, became famous for playing which fictional journalist in four films?
15. Why was the Bollinger Everyman Prize for Comic Fiction not awarded for the first time since it was introduced in 2000.

16. The father of two brothers killed in a hit-and-run in Coventry was found dead in a hotel room on which island?
17. England World Cup winner Ray Wilson, who died at 83, left football in the early 70s to set up what business?
18. Ben Fogle reached the summit of Mount Everest in a project to raise funds for which charity?
19. Which country won this year’s Eurovision Song Contest?
20. Trent Alexander-Arnold became only the eighth teenager in history to be included in what?
21. The changing tastes of millennials have been blamed for the demise of which brand, which was founded in 1965 and once attracted about 100,000 guests a year?
22. What won the best Drama Series at the Baftas?
23. Manchester City broke 11 Premier League records this season including the most number of points. How many did they get?
24. Academics from Skidmore College in New York said that adding what to a piece of text may ‘make it easier for the reader instinctively to separate units of meaning’?
25. University of Glasgow researchers advised that doing what at 10pm each night could help fend off depression?
Answers here

Friday, 11 May 2018

Test your news knowledge with this week's quiz

The top scorer in last week’s newsquiz was Toby Brown with 19. The top team was Dominic Hurst, Joe Williams, David Kohn and Phil Parsons with 18. Janet Boyle was also up there with 17. Here’s this week’s quiz - as usual 25 questions about the week. Let me know how you get on.

Today's front pages
1. Donald Trump told reporters: 'I would advise Iran not to start their nuclear programme. I would advise them very strongly. If they do there will be very ____ ____’. What are the two missing words?
2. Iran and Israel edged closer to all-out war after Israel’s military said its positions in which region were fired at with a barrage of Iranian rockets?
3. Iran’s Ayatollah Khamenei said that Donald Trump would become the food for which two creatures? Half a point for each
4. US President Donald Trump tweeted that he will meet North Korean leader Kim Jong-un on June 12 in which country?
5. The House of Lords voted to keep the UK in the single market after how many peers defied the Labour whip?
6. The Resolution Foundation recommended that every person in Britain should receive how much money when they turn 25?
7. The Government is considering banning what product which, according to Water UK, makes up 93 per cent of the material causing sewer blockages?
8. John Grogan was the only Labour MP to vote against what?
9. Who reportedly asked: 'How did Doncaster get on?’
10. The Met Office said temperatures reached 28.7C in London on Monday, making it the highest since the early May bank holiday was introduced. In what year did the May Day holiday start?
11. Which two football teams were automatically promoted to the Premier League. Half a point for each?
12. Who told viewers: 'I am going to be away for a couple of weeks or so. I’m having a small hospital operation and I will be back as soon as I possibly can, so be kind please to whoever is sitting in this chair next week’?
13. What was banned from the red carpet at the Cannes Film Festival after organisers described them as ‘grotesque’ and said they wanted to restore a bit of decency?
14. A 14-hour stand-off between a gunman and armed police took place in Paradise Square in which city?
15. Safaa Boular, 18, appeared at the Old Bailey accused of plotting a gun and grenade ambush on which building? 
16. Which company is recalling more than 300,000 cars in the UK because of an electrical fault that has caused some vehicles to cut out?
17. William and Shelby Thurston were found guilty of manslaughter after a seven-year-old girl died after playing on what?
18. Scientist Dr David Goodall travelled to Switzerland to take his own life at a suicide clinic. How old was he?
19. Why was Scott Mitchell in the headlines?
20. Zanele Ndlovu married five days after what had happened to her?
21. American lifestyle magazine Town & Country apologised to who after she was 'disinvited' to a social change event?
22. What is the name of Melania Trump’s campaign to keep children happy and healthy?
23. Seven million viewers tuned into Coronation Street to watch the aftermath of which character's suicide?
24. SuRie will represent the UK in the Eurovision Song Contest in Lisbon on Saturday. What is the name of her song?
25. What did world snooker champion Mark Williams wear for his victory press conference?

Answers here

Friday, 4 May 2018

Give this week's newsquiz a crack ...

There were some cracking scores in last week's newsquiz. Courtney Bartlett was the top solo scorer with 20 points, the same score as the best team, the Penman Partnership. Will Cole and Liz Gerard both scored 19 - a winning total any other week - and Toby Brown and Janet Boyle clocked up 18. There is a special mention for Enid Shelmerdine whose 17 was a Personal Best. Here's this week's quiz. As usual there are 25 questions about the week. Give it a go and let me know how you get on. 


Amber Rudd's resignation late on Sunday led to quick front page changes (Question 1)
1. Sajid Javid succeeded Amber Rudd as Home Secretary. What was his previous Cabinet position?
2. Conservative MP for Plymouth Moor View, Johnny Mercer, said Labour winning control of Plymouth City Council in the local elections was because of the Government's handling of what?
3. Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt blamed a computer glitch for 450,000 patients between which two ages not receiving letters inviting them for a final mammogram?
4. How many Tory MPs sent Prime Minister Theresa May a 30-page report warning that her Government will ‘collapse' if she does not abandon plans for a post-Brexit customs partnership with the EU?
5. The chief executive of TSB, Paul Pester, told the Treasury Select Committee: 'If there is one decision in my life that I could change it was the decision to go ahead with the ____.’ What is the missing word?
6. MPs voted by 316 votes to 221 against an opposition motion calling on the Government to disclose what?
7. The chief executive of Sainsbury's, Mike Coupe, apologised after being caught on camera singing which song as he was waiting to be interviewed for ITV News?
8. What is the name of the Barrow MP who has been suspended by the Labour Party after claims he sent inappropriate messages to a former female member of staff?
9. Michael Martin, who died on Sunday at the age of 72, held which role from 2000 to 2009?
10. What role was announced for father and son Storm and Tyrone?
11. What is now the minimum price of a unit of alcohol in Scotland?
12. Rapper Kanye West, in an interview with TMZ, said: 'When you hear about slavery for 400 years. For 400 years? That sounds like a ____.’ What is the missing word?
13. Liverpool became the first English team to reach the Champions League final for six years by beating Roma. What was the aggregate score?
14. The Australian prime minister’s wife Lucy Turnbull was 'flattered and charmed' to be described by French president Emmanuel Macron as what?
15. Mount Kilauea erupted prompting a state of emergency and the evacuation of 1,700 residents? Where is it?
16. What company, founded in 1894 and based in Nashville, which included B.B. King, Eric Clapton, Jimmy Page, Duane Allman and Slash among its customers, announced it was filing for bankruptcy?
17. Angus Sinclair said that his former boss had undermined him in front of staff, smashed a mobile phone over his desk and was prone to 'over-the-top anger’. Who was he talking about?
18. YouTube stars are being paid to promote cheating for students by encouraging them to buy essays on which website?
19. Whose family asked people to take down tributes outside two homes, in Oxfordshire and Highgate, by May 27?
20. What has been waived for one-day only on May 19?
21. The winner of what award will not be announced this year - only the seventh time in its 117-year history that it hasn’t been made - following sexual assault allegations?
22. Why did Ken Bruce start his BBC 2 radio show one hour early on Thursday?
23. Why was Dr Harold Bornstein in the headlines?
24. Which cartoon character, regarded as ‘politically incorrect’, was apparently targeted by online censors in China?
25. A pub called The Princess Royal near Turf Moor in Burnley is to be renamed what?

Answers here

Friday, 27 April 2018

Time to tackle the newsquiz

The top solo score in last week's quiz was Janet Boyle with an impressive 18 and the top team was Adam Batstone and Lucy Thorpe with 17. Here is this week's quiz. As usual there are 25 questions about the week's events. Give it a go and let me know how you get on. 

Royal baby crazy: Tuesday's front pages (Questions 1 and 2)

1. What three names were given to the baby boy born to the Duke and Duchess of Cambridge?
2. The new royal baby will be what number in the line to the throne?
3. Speaking to journalists at a lunch Home Secretary Amber Rudd said 'I don't feel I have been used in that way’ when asked if she was what?
4. Who chaired the Home Affairs Select Committee which accused Theresa May of repeatedly ignoring warnings about the 'damage her obsession with her net migration target was doing’?
5. The White House announced that President Donald Trump is to visit the UK on which date?
6. Who accused rebel MPs of 'working overtime trying to present the Labour Party as a morass of misogyny, anti-Semitism and bullying’?
7. The father of Alfie Evans, the baby at a centre of a legal battle in Liverpool, said of his son surviving after being taken off life support: 'Some people say it’s a miracle. It’s not a miracle; it’s a _____.’ What is the missing word?
8. Kim Jong-un made history as he became the first North Korean leader to cross the 38th parallel since the Korean War ended how many years ago?
9. How many people were killed when a van driver drove at 70mph along a pavement in Toronto?
10. The van driver who killed pedestrians in Toronto had posted on Facebook saying he was joining the 'Incel Rebellion’. What is Incel short for?
11. Chief executive Paul Pester said his company is 'on our knees’. Which company is he in charge of?
12. He often said he could drink his own weight in booze, was briefly married to a six-foot two model and his screen roles included Griphook. Who is he?
13. Prime Minister Theresa May announced that a national commemoration of whom is to take place on April 22 each year?
14. Why was 53-year-old Sean Cox in the news?
15. Why will Jackson Carlaw be taking over as temporary leader of the Scottish Conservatives?
16. French president Emmanuel Macron alluded to the fact his relationship with Donald Trump reminded him of that of Benjamin Franklin and which Frenchmen who 'embraced each other by hugging one another and kissing each other's cheeks'?
17. What did Everton captain Phil Jagielka carry on to the pitch before the match against Newcastle on Monday evening?
18. More than £100,000 was raised for the charity that 
MasterChef contestant Matt Campbell was raising money for when he died during the London Marathon. What is the charity called?
19. A bronze casting by artist Gillian Wearing became the first statue of a woman in Parliament Square. Who is depicted in the statue?
20. The Football Association announced it has received an offer to buy Wembley stadium from Shahid Khan, who is the owner of which British football club?
21. The body of the Swedish DJ Avicii was found at a hotel in which country?
22. Who called a prosecutor an asshole in court after he had asked the judge not to grant bail?
23. Who announced he was suing Facebook for running fake adverts using his name?
24. Kanye West tweeted: 'You don't have to agree with trump but the mob can't make me not love him. We are both _____ energy. He is my brother.’ What is the missing word?
25. Malcolm Trobe, deputy general secretary of the Association of School and College Leaders, said what was being removed from exam rooms as they were a ‘cause of unnecessary stress’?

Answers here


Friday, 20 April 2018

Can you handle the heat of the newsquiz?

Last week's newsquiz was seen as a tough one by most online players. That didn't stop Liz Gerard scoring a very healthy 19 though. The top team, led by Heather Clifton, scored 17. Here's this week's quiz. As usual 25 questions about the week's events. Give it a go and let me know how you get on.


1. Former head of the civil service Lord Kerslake called for an investigation into who authorised the destruction of thousands of what?
2. Theresa May apologised to the Windrush immigrants threatened with deportation. Why are they called Windrush immigrants?
3. According to senior EU diplomatic sources what was subjected to a 'systematic and forensic annihilation' this week?
4. The Pentagon said that US-led coalition unleashed how many cruise missiles on three Syrian chemical weapons centres?
5. In a special House of Commons debate which Labour MP said she had been told: 'Hang yourself you vile treacherous Zionist Tory filth'?
6. Former FBI director James Comey said of US president Donald Trump: 'I don't think he's medically unfit to be President. I think he's ____ unfit to be President.' What is the missing word?
7. Prime Minister Theresa May, in a continuing purge on plastics, said she had put forward ambitious plans to further reduce waste from plastic straws, stirrers and what other item?
8. The Queen opened the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting at Buckingham Palace after which singer sang the National Anthem?
9. The Parliamentary Standards Commissioner is investigating Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt's failure to declare his stake in a firm which bought seven luxury flats in which town?
10. Arsène Wenger announced he is leaving Arsenal, ending his reign as the Premier League’s longest-serving manager. What year did he join the club?
11. Why was Tammie Jo Shults in the headlines?
12. Her maiden name was Pierce, her codename was Tranquility and her family called her The Enforcer. Who was she?
13. How much was television presenter Ant McPartlin fined at Wimbledon Magistrates Court after admitting drink-driving?
14. Which football team, that carries the slogan The Club That Wouldn’t Die, celebrated promotion and the highest position in its history?
15. Dale Winton, who died aged 62, was mainly known as a television and radio presenter but he also played a game show host in which film in the 90s?
16. The pound fell against the euro and dollar on Thursday after the Governor of the Bank of England, Mark Carney, indicated that what might not happen in May?
17. What is the name of the BBC reporter who, when asked if he wanted to make a personal apology to Sir Cliff Richard, told the High Court he was sorry the star 'went through such a difficult time’?
18. King Mswati III of Swaziland announced that he was renaming the country and it is now called the Kingdom of what?
19. Which company has shut down all its social media - Twitter, Facebook and Instagram - because it had 'become a waste of time’?
20. Australia topped the Commonwealth Games with 198 medals, England were second with 136 and which country came third with 66?
21. Who announced that his wife Natasha Shishmanian is expecting twins?
22. What was the name of the Queen's 14-year-old corgi who was put to sleep this week?
23. How did Helen Housby achieve glory?
24
Temperatures soared to 84.4F (29.1C) in St James’s Park, London, on Thursday making it officially the hottest UK April day since what year?
25. Asda apologised to Nottingham shopper Bobbie Gordon after charging her £930.11 for what?

Answers here

Friday, 13 April 2018

Here's this week's newsquiz ...

The top scorer in last week's newsquiz was Janet Boyle with 18. Liz Gerard scored 17, as did the Penmans, aided by daughter Daisy back from uni for Easter. Here's this week's quiz. As usual, there are 25 questions about the week's events. Let me know how you get on. 

Getting ready for war: Syria dominates the front pages (questions 1-3)

1. A toxic gas attack on which Syrian city killed around 75 people?
2. Donald Trump tweeted a warning to Russia saying: 'You shouldn’t be partners with a ___ ___ ___ who kills his people and enjoys it!’ What are the three missing words?
3. Who said: 'We have proof that last week chemical weapons, at least chlorine, were used by the regime of Bashar al-Assad’? 
4. The Russian Embassy in the UK said the secret resettlement of poison victims Sergei and Yulia Skripal would be seen as what?
5. At the US Senate Facebook's Mark Zuckerberg was asked by Senator Orinn Hatch: 'So, how do you sustain a business model in which users don’t pay for your service?’ How did Zuckerberg respond?
6. Shadow international trade secretary Barry Gardiner was recorded using what word to express doubts over Labour's pledge to ensure that the UK will have the same benefits post-Brexit that it has in the single market?
7. The BBC came under fire over plans to air a full recitation of a speech given 50 years ago by which politician?
8. Why was South Park Crescent in the headlines?
9. Online retailer Shop Direct announced it is to close three warehouses in Manchester, putting nearly 2,000 jobs at risk. Name one of its brands.
10. Thomas Chipperfield lost his appeal against a Defra ruling which means he is no longer allowed to continue his job as what?
11. What connects 12-year-old Manchester Arena bombing victim Amelia Thompson, former soldier Philip Gillespie and Rosie Ginday, the founder of Miss Macaroon?
12. Andrew Burke, who was sentenced to a minimum 26 years for killing his ex-girlfriend in a Tui travel agent in Southport, boasted about the tattoo on his hands. What did the tattoo say?
13. Police investigated car parking company Absolutely Secure after it was accused of dumping holidaymakers' cars in muddy fields at which airport?
14. Hundreds of people staged a protest outside which hospital after judges set a date for terminally ill toddler Alfie Evans's life support to be withdrawn?
15. After a South London inquest recorded that six-year-old Ellie Butler was unlawfully killed, her grandfather said: 'I believe the agencies involved with Ellie’s care have ___ ___ ___ ___’. What are the missing four words?
16. Welsh table tennis prodigy Anna Hursey took 17 minutes to record her first victory in the Commonwealth Games singles competition. How old is she?
17. How was 67-year-old art dealer Todd Brassner killed?
18. Organisers of the Olivier Awards apologised for omitting who from a tribute segment shown during the ceremony?
19. Englishman Michael Oliver was accused by the Italian Press of 'the robbery of the century'. What did he do?
20. Iceland is to be the first major UK supermarket to ban which ingredient in its own-brand products?
21. Who is seeking damages for lost earnings from his autobiography My Life, My Way which he claimed was 'no longer viable’?
22. Bandmates paid tribute to 'our dear friend and brother’ Tim Matley who died age 36. What is the name of the band?
23. What is the name of the lingerie brand set up by Conservative peer Michelle Mone which announced it will cease trading in the UK?
24. The controversial name of a street in Rowley Regis in the West Midlands will not be changed after an online petition was supported by 4,800 people. What is the street called?
25. UK consumers will next week be able to buy a new KitKat, with 'naturally coloured’ chocolate made from cocoa beans grown in the Ivory Coast, Ecuador and Brazil. What colour will it be?

Answers here

Friday, 6 April 2018

Splendid tabloid look for the Inverness Courier

The new Inverness Courier
The old broadsheet Courier
Congratulations to the team at Scottish Provincial Press who this week saw the relaunch of three of their titles - The Inverness Courier, Northern Scot and Ross-shire Journal - as tabloids. The Courier has also launched a new lifestyle magazine Seven Days, which looks stunning. 
The cover of the new lifestyle magazine
Next month the group’s other broadsheets, the Northern Times, Caithness Courier and John O’Groat Journal will also change size while the existing tabloids will switch to a new design. My colleague Mike Brough and I thoroughly enjoyed working with the SPP team. It was a mammoth task executed brilliantly by John Davidson and Amanda Patterson. Editorial director David Bourn is rightly proud of the results. We have managed to keep the essence of these wonderful newspapers while presenting them in a vibrant new format which will please existing readers, tempt lapsed readers back into the fold and, hopefully, attract some new ones,  he said. They all deserve a large one at the excellent Malt Room tonight. Mike and I wish we were there to raise a glass with them. 

Have a crack at this week's newsquiz

The top scorer in last week’s newsquiz was Liz Gerard with an impressive 20 points. Jamie Johnson’s household was the top team with 19. Janet Boyle scored 18 as did Steven Silk. Graham Dudman and Charlie Coe also reported healthy scores with 17 each, the same as Adam Batstone and Lucy Thorpe. Here is this week’s quiz. As usual there are 25 questions about the week's events. Give it a go and let me know how you get on. 

Today's front pages

1. A Russian proposal for a joint investigation into the Salisbury poisonings was outvoted at a meeting of the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons in which city?
2. Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson reacted to claims he had misled people over the poisonings by saying: '28 other countries have been so convinced by the UK case they have expelled Russians. In contrast, Jeremy Corbyn chooses to side with the Russian ___ ___.’ What are the two missing words?
3. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said he had no regrets about attending a dinner organised by which left-wing Jewish group?
4. Alison Saunders announced she is to step down from which position at the end of her contract in October?
5. UK companies with more than how many staff had to submit their gender pay figures by midnight on Wednesday?
6. After a teenager was stabbed to death in Hackney, the Metropolitan police confirmed it is investigating how many suspected murders since the start of the year?
7. Tory MP Jacob Rees Mogg was sent a 'cease and desist' letter accusing him of ‘masquerading’ as which character?
8. Vauxhall's French parent company PSA announced that a new model of which van would be built at its Luton plant?
9. Nasim Aghdam, 39, shot three people and then killed herself at the YouTube offices in which Californian town?
10. When he stood in the 1984 Chesterfield by-election against Tony Benn, he was asked if voters could take seriously a man who played Selwyn Froggitt. Who was he? 
11. Former students in England and Wales, who took out loans from September 2012 onwards, will now start repayments when they earn how much per year?
12. Why was Richard Osborn-Brooks in the headlines?
13. Sergeant Matt Tonroe from Manchester became the first British serving officer to be killed doing what?
14. AC Milan legend Franco Baresi held up a shirt with whose name on it before the derby with Inter Milan on Wednesday?
15. In 1969 prisoner number 1323/69 was jailed for 18 months and kept a diary which was published as a book called 491 Days. Who was the prisoner?
16. Four members of a Bristol family were killed in a car crash in Florida while returning to their rented home after visiting what attraction?
17. What did Jazz Carlin, Eilidh Doyle, Alistair Brownlee and Caroline O'Hanlon all carry this week?
18. Former consultant Martin Watt was jailed for 12 years after being caught with guns and a list of colleagues he blamed for his dismissal from Monklands Hospital in Airdrie. What title did he give the list?
19. Who was 'in good spirits’ at King Edward VII hospital in Marylebone?
20. Who received a 'heartfelt congratulations’ on its 100th anniversary from the Queen who ended her message with the organisation’s own motto Per Ardua ad Astra?
21. Why did Liverpool FC apologise ‘unreservedly’ to Manchester City?
22. The Echo Arena in Liverpool burst into a rendition of 'there's only one ____ ____’ on Thursday night. What are the missing two words?
23. What measure, introduced today (Friday), does the Treasury estimate will raise £240million a year?
24. The Prime Minister of which country joined a social media protest over MasterChef judges John Torode and Gregg Wallace after they said that chicken rendang needed ‘crispy’ skin?
25. What did MP Nadine Dorries says was 'too vicious’ and ‘too abrasive’ for women?

Answers here

Friday, 30 March 2018

Bhvishya wins the newsquiz champagne

Trainees Charlie Coe, Sophie Law, Claire Anderson, Bhvishya Patel (with the champagne), Leigh McManus, Bryony Jewell and Faith Ridler
I said goodbye to the MailOnline trainees in Kensington yesterday. They had another good week with sessions by deputy managing editor Natalie Glanvill, ex-global editor Amy Marley and head of social media Chris Lawrence. One of last year’s trainees, Dianne Apen-Sadler, also talked through what the next 12 months are likely to bring. Well done to Leigh McManus and Claire Anderson who both wrote banners on the travel page. Leigh’s was an account of his visit to China’s deserted replica of Paris. You can read it here.


Claire wrote about a 20-year-old woman who snuck on to Concorde disguised as an engineer after its maiden voyage in 1976.  You can read it here


The trainees also pitched stories to Femail so there should be more bylines soon. We had drinks with former trainees and senior staff in the Greyhound last night. They finished the week - and the course - with the newsquiz. This week’s winners was Charlie Coe and with 17 points, narrowly ahead of Bhvishya Patel and Bryony Jewell who scored 16.5. Congratulations to Bhvishya who won the champagne for the best quiz score over the four weeks. Bryony, only two points behind, was a commendable runner-up. The trainees are now off to their placements at regional newspapers and agencies. They are a bright, likeable, talented bunch and I enjoyed their company. I wish them well. Here’s this week’s newsquiz. Give it a go and see if you can beat Charlie’s 17. 

1. Theresa May said after Brexit the UK will no longer send vast sums to Europe 'so there will be money available here in the UK to spend on our priorities’. Which two things did she identify as priorities? Half a point for each
2. Boris Johnson apologised in the Commons after referring to the shadow foreign secretary as Baroness Nugee? What is her real name?
3. Owen Smith was sacked from the shadow cabinet. What position did he hold?
4. Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn said this week: 'I want to be clear that I will not tolerate any form of ___-___ that exists in and around our movement’. What is the missing hyphenated word? 
5. The Government announced that more than 3,500 places on training courses are to be created over the next four years in England? What will the courses be in?
6. Whose decision not to appear before a parliamentary inquiry into fake news, was described as astonishing by its chairman Damian Collins?
7. President Donald Trump ordered the expulsion of how many Russian diplomats which he said the US identified as intelligence agents?
8. The niece of poisoned Russian Sergei Skripal said this week that her uncle and his daughter had what per cent chance of survival?
9. Magician Dynamo released a video to explain that his recent change of appearance is due to medication he is taking for which disease? 
10. Two women, known only as DSD and NBV, achieved a landmark legal victory when three High Court judges made a ruling on Wednesday. What was the judges’ ruling?
11. Why was Arnaud Beltrame in the headlines? 
12. Who said: 'I know I will regret this for the rest of my life. I'm absolutely gutted. I hope in time I can earn back that respect and forgiveness’?
13. Thousands of people, including Paul McCartney and George Clooney, joined a mass protest against guns across America. What was the name of the protest?
14. Catalan leader Carles Puigdemont was detained after crossing the border between which two countries? 
15. To the nearest hour how long did Qantas QF9 take when it became the first non-stop scheduled flight from Australia to the UK?
16. Playboy, Mozilla and Sonos were among several brands that withdrew their advertising from where?
17. Who said in an interview that she was approached in a car park by a man who told her: 'That’s a beautiful little girl. It’d be a shame if something happened to her mom’?
18. A report into the Manchester Arena bomb attack criticised fire chiefs, Vodafone and the media. Who wrote it?  
19. A fire at a shopping centre in which Siberian city left at least 64 people dead?
20. Jamie Vardy scored for England against Italy but an equaliser was down to VAR. What does VAR stand for?
21. England is considering introducing what scheme which already exists in 40 countries - including Germany, Sweden and Israel - and 21 US states?
22. Swiss Federal Institute of Aquatic Science and Technology researchers found that what household item is often teeming with bacteria, including Legionella?
23. The owner of Bargain Booze and Wine Rack has announced plans to file for administration within two weeks. What is the company called?
24. TV presenter Richard Madeley was criticised for suggesting weather girl Lucy Verasamy should 'pop outside and test' what?
25. What appeared on the balcony of Liverpool Town Hall and also decorated statues of The Beatles, Billy Fury, the Moores’ brothers, John Lennon and Cilla Black?

Answers here

Friday, 23 March 2018

Can you beat Bhvishya's newsquiz score?

The MailOnline trainees had another busy week. They recreated the newsroom with former global editor Amy Marley, pitched stories to travel editor Ted Thornhill and had a session with former trainee Rod Ardehali. Editor Emeritus Peter Wright also talked through IPSO and the editors’ code. They covered a breaking news story, learned about Femail and Leigh McManus won a scratchcard for the best picture headline. There was a special 'well done' to Bryony Jewell whose story about dogs on the Tube was published on the site. Read it here.



As usual we finished the week with the newsquiz and the winner with 15.5 was  Bhvishya Patel. Last week’s newsquiz saw some high scores online. The pick of the bunch was Ellie Rewcastle with 19, narrowly ahead of Janet Boyle on 18. The top team was the Penman Partnership with 18.5. Gavin Devine and the Adam Batstone and Lucy Thorpe partnership all scored 17.5, the same as top trainees Bryony and Leigh. Here’s this week’s quiz, as usual 25 questions about the week. Give it a go and see if you can beat Bhvishya’s score.



1. TV personality Ant McPartlin was charged with drink driving at which London police station?
2. What two makes of car did Ant McPartlin’s car hit in the accident which led to his drink-drive arrest? Half a point for each
3. Ant McPartlin’s mother was his passenger when he crashed his car in London. What is her name?
4. The Russian ambassador in London Alexander Yakovenko reacted to Boris Johnson’s Hitler jibe by saying: ‘Nobody has the right to insult the Russian people, who defeated Nazism and lost more than ___  people, by comparing our country to Nazi Germany.’ What is the missing number?

5. A gunman was killed after taking hostages at a supermarket in which French town?
6. Nigel Farage joined fishermen to protest at the EU transition deal by dumping two crates of what type of fish in the Thames in front of Parliament?
7. Alexander Nix was suspended as CEO of which company?
8. The co-founder of WhatsApp Brian Acton posted to Twitter: 'It is time’ and added which hashtag?
9. How did 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg die?
10. Health Secretary Jeremy Hunt revealed an increase in NHS salaries of between 6.5 per cent and ___ per cent over three years? What is the missing figure?
11. The pilot whose plane crashed in the Shoreham airshow disaster, killing 11 men, will be charged with the endangerment of an aircraft and which other offence?
12. Ireland beat England at Twickenham to remain undefeated in the rugby Six Nations to top the table with 26 points but which country was second with 15?
13. An engineer died after a Red Arrows jet crashed at RAF Valley on which island?
14. What is the name of the Franco–Dutch firm that has won the contract to print Britain’s post-Brexit blue passports?
15. Which country will the Pope visit on August 25 and 26 to attend the World Meeting of Families?
16. Vladimir Putin extended his rule of Russia for another six years winning what per cent of the vote, his highest ever?
17. England cricketers were skittled out in the first innings for their lowest ever score against New Zealand. What was the score?
18. Which Parliament is to debate proposals in May to change the law which would allow terminally ill adults with less than six months to live to choose assisted dying?
19. What has Californian Claire Ptak been commissioned to make?
20. 26-year-old British woman Anna Campbell died in which country?

21. Who said this week: 'I was really pleased to accept this. I'll be wearing it at breakfast'? 
22. 39-year-old mother Andria Zafirakou from London won £700,000 ($1million) after being voted the best what in the world?
23. Which High Street chain announced it will shut 60 stores and cut 980 jobs as part of a restructuring plan?
24. Sudan, a 45-year-old animal that was put down in a Kenyan wildlife reserve, was the last male of what subspecies in the world?
25. Why were husband and wife John and Sarah Lund in the headlines?


Answers here

Friday, 16 March 2018

Bryony and Leigh win the newsquiz

The MailOnline trainees had a full week in the Kensington HQ. They enjoyed a day with the Mail lawyers and a session by editorial compliance manager Paul Hutchinson, went through the stylebook with Mike Watson, presented exclusive story ideas to assistant editor Ian Walker, had a walk through the travel page with Ted Thornhill and received a good overview of video from Lisa Snell. Sophie Law won a scratchcard for the best video headline. And well done too to Claire Anderson who was the first trainee on the course to be published with a story she brought in. Read it here



Hopefully, we will see many more bylines over the next couple of weeks.
We finished as always with the newsquiz. This week’s joint winner with scores of 17.5 were Bryony Jewell and Leigh McManus, who were narrowly ahead of Bhvishya Patel with 17. Bhvishya’s score of 16 last week was, unusually, not beaten by anyone online. Adam Batstone and Lucy Thorpe did manage a joint 16 though. Here is this week’s quiz. As usual, it is 25 questions about the week. See if you can beat Bryony and Leigh's score.


Russia's front page domination

1. How many Russian diplomats did Theresa May say would be expelled from Britain?
2. According to Theresa May the nerve agents used to poison Sergei Skripal and his daughter Yulia belong to a group known as what?
3. Who was accused by Russia's Major-General Igor Konashenkov of talking like a 'market wench' which reflected his 'extreme intellectual impotency’?
4. Which three countries joined with the UK to say, in a joint statement, that Russian involvement was 'the only plausible explanation’ for the Salisbury poisonings?
5. Jeremy Corbyn defended his position on the Russian poisoning affair by saying we should not resign ourselves to a ‘new cold war of escalating arms spending, proxy conflicts across the globe and a ______ intolerance of dissent’? What is the missing word? 
6. How did Theresa May greet a tattooed woman as she went on a walkabout in Salisbury following the poisonings?
7. Sir Ken Dodd died at the house where he was born in 1927 in which area of Liverpool?
8. Ken Dodd had one Number 1 hit in the UK with a song that was the biggest-selling single of 1965 and the third-biggest selling single of the 1960s. What was it called?
9. Unilever has chosen which city as its new headquarters for its food and refreshment division?
10. Who said he wasn’t told he had lost his job until three hours after it was tweeted?
11. At least six people were killed after a footbridge collapsed near which university (full name please)?
12. How old was Stephen Hawking, who died this week age 76, when he was diagnosed with motor neurone disease?
13. Labour MP Debbie Abrahams claimed she had been the victim of a ‘bullying culture’ after she stepped aside from what role in the shadow cabinet? 
14. An inquiry was called for after it was revealed that girls in which town were drugged, beaten and raped at the hands of a grooming gang active since the 1980s? 
15. Tens of thousands of students across America walked out of their classrooms for how many minutes on Wednesday in a protest about gun laws?
16. Peter Williams was born in Cheshire, appeared on Last of the Summer Wine, advertised Tetley beer and became a household name by presenting a TV progamme for 14 years. How is he better known?
17. Egyptian engineering student Mariam Moustafa, 18, died after being attacked by a gang of girls in which city?
18. Who missed the last two days of the Cheltenham Festival after damaging his leg when he fell from Al Boum Photo?
19. Which retailer withdrew a red shirt with 96 on the back that some believe referred to the Hillsborough disaster?
20. In his spring statement Chancellor Philip Hammond announced a consultation which could lead to the end of what three monetary denominations?
21. Who was suspended after apologising for a ‘moment of madness’?
22. Which city was  named the most attractive place to work and live in the UK based on nine qualities of life, in a survey commissioned by Royal Mail? 
23. Which newspaper was voted Newspaper of the Year in this week’s Press Awards?
24. Protesters stormed the arena at Crufts as the winner was presented with Best in Show. What was the name of the winning dog?
25. Walkers Crisps is marking its 70th anniversary by releasing six  flavours to celebrate the nation's favourite dishes - one for each decade. Coronation chicken represents the 1950s and roast lamb and mint the 1960s. Name any two other flavours. Half point for each.

Answers here