Tulkinghorn: The reel deal

Ashurst senior partner Charlie Geffen appeared to be angling for some compliments last week when he met up with one of ­Tulkinghorn’s hacks.

“Look at the size of that!” he exclaimed, holding out a picture on his mobile for the unnerved reporter to examine.

With some trepidation the hack approached the phone, only to see a pic of the Geffmeister clutching a whopping fish.

“I can’t send it you because I know it’ll end up in Tulkinghorn,” said Ashurst’s top dog.

And then Tulkinghorn would probably make some quip about it being bigger than the firm’s profit this year, so probably a wise decision.

Net losses

Shoosmiths seems dead set on rolling from one PR ­disaster to another.

You may recall the firm hitting the headlines last month for refusing to offer its trainees a payout to defer their training ­contracts. When a couple of its future joiners ­publicly backed the firm’s stingy decision, most ­readers guessed (rightly or wrongly) that their ­eagerness to praise ­Shoosmiths bore the ­hallmarks of the firm’s PR department.

Now this. Tulkinghorn has discovered that ­Shoosmiths put in an appearance at Birmingham University last year to play the university’s netball team in a ‘relationship-building’ friendly.

But unlike other firms that stumped up the cash for the courts and ­also managed to take the hard-up students for a slap-up meal afterwards, Shoosmiths suggested their team go halves on the £30 court fee.

Well, times are hard.

Flat attack

Following on from ­Slaughter and May’s two-wheeled efforts (box, above right), here’s some more cycling-related ­hilarity.

Tulkinghorn was sad to see a rather deflated ­Gordon Moir, general counsel at BT Retail, in ­various national newspapers recently ­struggling with a flat tyre midway through a bicycle race.

Moir, a keen cyclist, was taking part in Etape Caledonia, an 81-mile race for charity around Perthshire in May, only to run into carpet tacks ­scattered by a disgruntled local.

Police stopped the race and swept the roads clear and, following the restart, Moir completed the race in his best-ever time. But not before a man with a ­camera popped up and took his picture midway through his puncture ­tending.

The following day Moir received numerous telegrams from friends and colleagues after he was ­pictured in The Observer among others, forlornly tending to his push iron.

“He said he was a freelance photographer,” pleaded Moir. “He assured me it wouldn’t appear ­anywhere.” He lied.

Wheels of fortune

Slaughter and May’s intrepid trio of cyclists have returned from Africa battered and bruised, but none the worse for wear.

Nigel Boardman, William Underhill and Glen James cycled around 500km in five days across Zambia, raising more than £85,000 for charity.
Tulkinghorn knew they could do it – but the trip was not without obstacles.

First, the problem of bruising to a rather sensitive area of the body. The fact that the trio came back singing the praises not of the beautiful landscape, but of customised saddles and Assos Chamois Cream, shows how serious this issue can be.

Then there was the threat of wild animals. One night Boardman was woken when something large and hairy landed on his legs.

When he realised it was not Underhill he kicked the beast off and screamed for help, but when none was forthcoming he did the obvious thing and went back to sleep. It was only the next morning when he spotted the offender – an elderly domestic dog.

Other highlights include James attempting traditional African dancing and looking, according to Tulkinghorn’s mole, like “a patient undergoing electric shock treatment”. Or like a Slaughters assistant tasked with slapping on the Assos.

Tulkinghorn would like to congratulate the trio on their achievement.