Taking Stock – Westropp bids us so long, and thanks for all the fish.

A sad day for accountancy PR. George Westropp, chief spin doctor for Deloitte & Touche, has announced he is to retire at the end of this year, after 21 years with the firm.

Famed for taking many a press call while thigh deep in salmon infested brooks, Westropp came to prominence in the early 1980s spearheading the campaign to allow accountants to market themselves properly, forcing the English Institute in 1985 to change its rules on advertising and sponsorship.

So you can blame him for all the shocking accountancy adverts that have graced these pages ever since.

And we shouldn’t forget that non-accountant Westropp is a partner at Deloittes, an honour not bestowed upon many PRs in the accountancy world, actually none other that TS knows of.

Many rumours circulate about how he managed to achieve such dizzy heights, with TS hearing that the Westropp name was added to the list of potential contenders almost as an after thought following an appearance on the Money Programme, but then was comfortably voted in.

Either way, he is a true doyen of professional services public relations, having fought off many media frenzies, including the collapse of BCCI and Polly Peck in the early 1990s.

After starting on Fleet Street, when it really was Fleet Street in the 1960s, grafting on the Express and Evening Standard, Westropp maintained his hack credentials by running the London Press Club for most of the 1990s.

Westropp, who can trace his family back over 750 years, now intends to spend even more time with his fish, planning a trip down under next year.

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