As part of my role I was automatically elected to be a member of the British Fashion Council, sitting with designers and industry leaders to discuss industry-wide matters.
|ASIDE: This was a point of some amusement at home as Jane had bought all of my clothes since we met at 15 years old, she really cares about fashion, while I have never shown a great deal of personal interest. But, now, whenever she criticises what I am wearing I can counter with ‘Remind me, which one of us was on the British Fashion Council?’ – that usually closes any argument.|
EMAP lobbied the Fashion Council and a meeting was called with EMAP and Blenheim invited to talk over the future, before our battle of the shows could damage the business. I was allowed to sit on the Council for much of this, and Staffan and David were invited to represent Blenheim. For several sessions we were requested to leave the meeting of course.
We were all re-convened for the chair to summarise what had been discussed. He made one point that I believed to be incorrect and started to correct this, Staffan turned and said aloud ‘Shut up Bob’. Later in the summary I started to dispute another false conclusion and Staffan again said ‘Shut up Bob’. The outcome was that the Council supported EMAP to seize more of the market. As we walked away from the meeting, I resigned on the basis that I could not command respect after those public rebukes.