payout for woman who falsely accused her father of rape after 'recovered
memory' therapy - 19th October 2007
woman who falsely accused her father of rape after undergoing a
discredited "recovered memory" psychotherapy has won a £20,000
payout from a local health authority.
Fairlie claimed a hospital psychiatrist almost ruined her life after he
extracted false memories that her father, Jim, a former deputy leader of
the Scottish National Party, had sexually abused her.
Fairlie, who withdrew the baseless allegations months after making them,
revealed during other sessions with consultant Dr Alex Yellowlees that she
witnessed her father murder a child and named him and 17 other men,
including two politicians, as paedophiles.
2005, she launched a £500,000 action for negligence against NHS Tayside
asserting that its staff had failed in their duty of care to her by
failing to check the likely truth of her allegations which have caused her
and her family years of distress.
case was due to be heard at the Court of Session in Edinburgh this week,
but at the eleventh hour, bosses at the trust offered the substantial
out-of-court settlement instead.
37-year-old Miss Fairlie said: "After so many traumatic years, I
finally feel that I can put this nightmare behind me and start getting on
with my life.
I am still extremely angry at the hospital and the consultant involved who
all but ruined my life and damaged my family.
this day, they have never apologised for what they did to me and I would
much rather have got no money just for the chance of seeing them squirm in
court and admit what they did to me.
my QC advised me that the best thing to do was accept the money. He said
it would hurt them to have to pay out that much. I know they are not going
to say sorry or admit liability, but I regard this payment as some sort of
an acknowledgement by them, whatever they may say."
Fairlie's ordeal began in 1994 when she was admitted to Perth Royal
Infirmary at the age of 25 suffering from severe abdominal pains.
was later referred to the psychiatric unit at the town's Murray Royal
Hospital after doctors concluded she was imagining the pain following
operations to remove her appendix and her gall bladder.
a patient of Dr Yellowlees, Miss Fairlie says she underwent a form of
Recovered Memory Therapy (RMT) - a controversial technique since
discredited by the Royal College of Physicians.
therapy claims to "unlock" memories so painful the patient has
blocked them out of their conscious mind rendering them retrievable only
through dreams and hypnosis.
revelations which sprang from this former postal worker's therapy during
five months of intensive treatment were shocking: a series of outlandish
claims of sexual abuse against her father and a number of others while she
was in a very disturbed mental state and on powerful medication.
claimed she was the victim of a paedophile ring involving her father and
described seeing him batter a six-year-old girl to death with an iron bar.
Dr Yellowlees later told other family members that abuse had occurred, Mr
Fairlie's previously unblemished reputation and close and loving
relationship with his family had been damaged.
and social workers from Perth and Kinross Council were also called in, but
Miss Fairlie withdrew all the allegations in 1995 and the police later
dropped their investigation.
years ago, Mr Fairlie, now 66, of Crieff, Perthshire, lost his own bid for
£250,000 compensation against the former Perth and Kinross Healthcare NHS
Trust - now part of NHS Tayside.
judge, Lord Kingarth, found against Mr Fairlie on a technicality after
ruling that Dr Yellowlees only had a duty of care to his patients and not
to their relatives.
2005, however, Miss Fairlie decided to launch her own separate legal
action. She said: "I was determined to make people see what happened
to me. I lost years of my life because of the opinions of psychiatrists.
am relieved that this is over and now I can move on. I am lucky because my
family have stood by me and we have become closer because of this."
night, Mr Fairlie said the damage the council and the health board had
done was irreparable and that over 1,400 cases across the UK similar to
his daughter's had been reported to the British False Memory Society.
said: "This decision really is a victory for Katrina and a
vindication of what we as a family have been saying for so long, that the
psychiatric profession acts as if it is a law unto itself and can do
enormous damage to patients and their relatives.
happened to my daughter and me should not be allowed to happen to anyone
NHS Tayside spokesperson said: "We can confirm that an out-of-court
settlement was reached with Miss Fairlie without any admission of
liability on the part of NHS Tayside, or its predecessor authorities, and
that settlement was made purely on an economic basis."
Yellowlees, who is now medical director at the Priory Clinic, Glasgow, was
unavailable for comment.
Fairlie and dad Jim
labour government believes men shouldn't have the right to a justice
system, they believe conviction rates should be set at specific levels.
Another government quota. Thanks Harriet and co. How many innocent men
would you like to put in prison, are you going to put a quota on that too?
- Simon, York
problem is that this is only the tip of the iceberg. These cases are far
more prevalent than is realised. The falsely accused should be compensated
as most of the time they lose their partners, homes, jobs and reputation
not to mention their freedom if they have been wrongly convicted.
- Helga, Lancashire
a psychotherapist I have used similar techniques to this to 'unlock'
memories. Unfortunately, unless the therapist knows exactly what he is
doing and employs rigid discipline in his method of questioning it is far
too easy to 'implant' false memories by leading the patient to give the
answers that the therapist is looking for. I am not suggesting that this
happened in this case, but it is possible.
It is vital that therapists approach this technique without any
preconceived idea of may have happened.
- Dr David Vickers, West Lancashire
time this dangerous 'therapy' was banned. With no scientific basis it has
destroyed countless lives around the world.
- Chris Downing, Yorkshire
The Daily Mail is a British newspaper, a tabloid, first published in 1896. It is Britain's second biggest-selling daily newspaper after The Sun, and arguably the most right-wing. Its sister paper, the Mail on Sunday was launched in 1982. An Irish version of the paper was launched on 6 February 2006. The Daily Mail was Britain's first daily newspaper aimed at what is now considered the middle-market and the first to sell 1 million copies a day.
The Mail was originally a broadsheet, but switched to its current tabloid format on 3 May 1971, on the 75th anniversary of its founding (on this date it also absorbed the Daily Sketch, which had previously been published as a tabloid by the same company). Its long-standing rival, the Daily Express, has a broadly similar political stance and target readership, but nowadays sells one-third the number of copies. Since 2005, the publisher of the Mail, the Daily Mail and General Trust, has been a FTSE 100 company, and the paper has a circulation of more than two million, giving it one of the largest circulations of any English language daily newspaper, and the twelfth highest of any newspaper in the world.
Circulation figures to July 2007 show gross sales of 2,400,143 for the Daily Mail, compared with 794,252 for the Daily Express. This is an increase of almost a third over the sales figures for the Daily Mail 25 years ago, when it sold 1.87 million copies a day. By comparison, the Daily Express was selling over 2 million copies a day, so its sales have reduced by 60% over the same period.
The Daily Mail tries to occupy a position midway between the tabloid and broadsheet divide, covering much of the same celebrity ground as the tabloids but attempting to position itself as a more upmarket "middle class" publication.
The Daily Mail, devised by Alfred Harmsworth (later Lord Northcliffe) and his brother Harold (later Lord Rothermere), was first published on 4 May 1896 and was an immediate success. It cost a halfpenny at a time when other London dailies cost one penny, and was more populist in tone and more concise in its coverage than its rivals. Soon after its launch it had more than half a million readers.
Controlled editorially by Alfred, with Harold running the business side of the operation, the Mail from the start adopted a vigorously imperialist political stance, taking a strongly patriotic line in the Second Boer War, leading to claims that it was not reporting the issues of the day objectively. From the beginning, the Mail also set out to entertain its readers with human interest stories, serials, features and competitions (which were also the main means by which the Harmsworths promoted the paper).
In 1906 the paper offered £1,000 for the first flight across the English Channel, and £10,000 for the first flight from London to Manchester. Punch magazine thought the idea preposterous and offered £10,000 for the first flight to Mars, but by 1910 both the Mail's prizes had been won. (For full list see Daily Mail aviation prizes.)
In 1908 the Daily Mail began the Ideal Home Exhibition, which it still runs today.
The paper was accused of warmongering before the outbreak of World War I, when it reported that Germany was planning to crush the British Empire. Northcliffe created controversy by advocating conscription when the war broke out. On 21 May 1915, Northcliffe wrote a blistering attack on Lord Kitchener, the Secretary of State for War. Kitchener was considered a national hero, and overnight the paper's circulation dropped from 1,386,000 to 238,000. 1,500 members of the London Stock Exchange ceremonially burned the unsold copies and launched a boycott against the Harmsworth Press. Prime Minister H. H. Asquith accused the paper of being disloyal to the country.
When Kitchener died, the Mail reported it as a great stroke of luck for the British Empire. The paper then campaigned against Asquith, who resigned on 5 December 1916. His successor, David Lloyd George, asked Northcliffe to be in his cabinet, hoping it would prevent him criticising the government. Northcliffe declined.
In 1922, when Lord Northcliffe died, Lord Rothermere took full control of the paper.
In 1924 the Daily Mail published the forged Zinoviev Letter which indicated that British Communists were planning violent revolution. It was widely believed that this was a significant factor in the defeat of Ramsay MacDonald's Labour Party in the 1924 general election, held four days later. (In some Labour circles, e.g. by former Labour leader Michael Foot, the paper is often referred to as 'The Forgers' Gazette')
Support for Nazism and Fascism
In early 1934 Rothermere and the Mail were sympathetic to Oswald Mosley and the British Union of Fascists. Rothermere wrote an article, "Hurrah for the Blackshirts", in January 1934, in which he praised Mosley for his "sound, commonsense, Conservative doctrine", though after the violence of the 1934 Olympia meeting involving the BUF, the Mail withdrew its support for Mosley.
Rothermere was a friend and supporter of both Benito Mussolini and Adolf Hitler, which influenced the Mail's political stance towards them up to 1939. During this period it was the only British newspaper consistently to support the German Nazi Party. Rothermere visited and corresponded with Hitler on many occasions. On 1 October 1938, Rothermere sent Hitler a telegram in support of Germany's invasion of the Sudetenland, and expressing the hope that 'Adolf the Great' would become a popular figure in Britain.
In 1937, the Mail's chief war correspondent, George Ward Price, to whom Mussolini once personally wrote in support of him and the newspaper, published a book, I Know These Dictators, in defence of Hitler and Mussolini.
Rothermere and the Mail supported Neville Chamberlain's policy of appeasement, particularly during the events leading up to the Munich Agreement. However, after the Nazi invasion of Prague in 1939, the Mail changed position and urged Chamberlain to prepare for war, not least, perhaps, because on account of its stance it had been threatened with closure by the British
The paper continued to be referred to on occasion by critics as the Daily Heil, referring to its conservative stance and its past support for
The Daily Mail was transformed by its editor of the seventies and eighties, Sir David English. Sir David began his Fleet Street career in 1951, joining The Daily Mirror before moving to The Daily Sketch, where he became features editor. It was the Sketch which brought him his first editorship, from 1969 to 1971. That year the Sketch was closed and he moved to take over the top job at the Mail, where he was to remain for more than 20 years. English transformed it from a struggling rival selling two million copies fewer than the Daily Express to a formidable journalistic powerhouse, which soared dramatically in popularity.
After 20 years perfecting the Mail, Sir David English became editor-in-chief and chairman of Associated Newspapers in 1992.
The paper enjoyed a period of journalistic success in the 1980s, employing some of the most inventive writers in old Fleet Street including the gossip columnist Nigel Dempster, Lynda Lee Potter and sportswriter Ian Wooldridge (who unlike some of his colleagues - the paper generally did not support sporting boycotts of white-minority-ruled South Africa - strongly opposed Apartheid). In 1982, a Sunday title, the Mail on Sunday was launched (the Sunday Mail was already the name of a newspaper in
Scotland, owned by the Mirror Group.) There are Scottish editions of both the Daily Mail and Mail on Sunday, with different articles and columnists. In 1992, the current editor, Paul Dacre, was appointed.
It officially entered the Irish market with the launch of a local version of the paper on 6 February 2006; free copies of the paper were distributed on that day in some locations to publicise the launch. Its masthead differs from that of UK versions by having a green rectangle with the word "IRISH", instead of the Royal Arms. The Irish version includes stories of Irish interest alongside content from the UK version. According to the Audit Bureau of Circulations, the Irish edition had a circulation of 55,311 for July 2006. Since 24 September 2006 Ireland on Sunday, the Irish Sunday newspaper acquired by Associated in 2001, was replaced by an Irish edition of the Mail on Sunday (the Irish Mail on Sunday), to tie in with the weekday newspaper.
The Daily Mail considers itself to be the voice of Middle England speaking up for "small-c" conservative values against what it sees as a liberal establishment. It generally takes an anti-European, anti-immigration, Christian, anti-abortion view, and is correspondingly "pro-family", anti-taxation, pro-capitalism and pro-monarchy, as well as advocating stricter punishments for crime. The paper is generally critical of the BBC, which it perceives as being biased to the left. However, it is less supportive of deregulated commercial television than The Sun, and unlike Rupert Murdoch's tabloid it seems to be broadly nostalgic for what it believes the BBC once was.
In the late 1960s the paper went through a phase of being liberal on social issues like corporal punishment, but this proved short-lived and it soon reverted to its traditional right-wing conservative line.
In Richard Littlejohn, who returned in 2005 from The Sun, it has one of the most right-wing columnists in popular British journalism, alongside Peter Hitchens, who joined its sister title the Mail on Sunday in 2001, when his former newspaper, the Daily Express, was purchased by Richard Desmond, the owner of a number of pornographic titles. The editorial stance was highly critical of Tony Blair, when he was still Prime Minister, and endorsed the Conservative Party in the 2005 general
election. However, in Blair's earlier years as Labour leader and then Prime Minister the paper often wrote positively about him and his reforms of the party. Opponents of Littlejohn have accused the columnist of being preoccupied with homosexuality (which he frequently calls 'poofery') and lying about asylum seekers being 'hosed down in
On Middle East issues it is generally pro-Israel, with regular columnists Richard Littlejohn and Melanie Phillips (both previously with Murdoch papers) taking a strongly Zionist and anti-Arab line. However, the Mail is still less slanted in this direction than the Murdoch papers - it has expressed doubts about the Iraq War, and in 2004 the Conservative columnist (and now politician) Michael Gove wrote a piece in The Times accusing it of allying itself with the anti-war Left.
To the surprise of some of its critics, the Mail championed the case of Stephen Lawrence, a black teenager who was murdered in a racially motivated attack in Eltham, London in April 1993. In February 1997 the Mail led its front page with a picture of the five men accused of Lawrence's
murder and the headline "MURDERERS", stating that it believed that the men had murdered Lawrence and adding "if we are wrong, let them sue us".
The Mail has also opposed the growing of genetically-modified crops in the United Kingdom, a stance it shares with many of its left-wing critics.
The Mail is well-known for its strong stance on numerous issues which it sees as being of "moral significance". These include continuing condemnation of convicted criminals such as Myra Hindley and Maxine Carr, and attacks on television programmes such as Jerry Springer - The Opera or Brass Eye. The "Daily Hate" (or lately "Hate Mail") nicknames are in part because - according to Polly Toynbee in The Guardian
- the Mail's founder, Lord Northcliffe, said his winning formula was to give his readers "a daily hate". One widely-criticised headline in recent years was 'Abortion hope after “gay genes”
The Mail is also known for its strong stance on immigration, and its treatment of issues such as asylum seekers has prompted opponents (including London Mayor Ken Livingstone in a well-publicised argument) to claim that the newspaper panders to racism in this respect.
The newspaper is accused by its critics of having an anti-semitic past, being described by Ken Livingstone as having campaigned not to admit Jewish refugees from Nazi Germany, that it described Jews as infiltrating and undermining the pre-Hitler German government, supporting the Nazis, and blaming the Jews for having caused bad feeling against them in
The paper now strongly repudiates far-right groups, for instance on 3 February 2006 having the front page headline "In Britain: Two members of the odious BNP go free over remarks offensive to most decent people" on the same day as publishing the article 'Cheers as BNP leader walks free'. Despite its anti-immigration stance the paper has however campaigned for failed asylum seekers from Zimbabwe to be allowed to stay in Britain.
The Daily Mail's online presence with its 'comment' features beneath the articles has caused some to claim that the paper's readers are less right-wing than the paper's editorial line. An example of this is a 2007 article by Lowri Turner regarding her feelings of anxiety about having had a mixed-race child. The article attracted 16 comments every one of which was critical of her stance and many of which accused her of harbouring racist attitudes. However, it could be counterargued that these comments may be from people who would not regularly read the
Common satirical target
The paper, and the stereotypical "Daily Mail reader" have become stock characters in the UK (as the phrase "Guardian reader" has become for the left/liberal archetype), and are often featured in a negative light in other publications and media:
A stand up comedy show at the Edinburgh Festival 2007 is called All Daily Mail Writers Must Die, by a comedian called William Hanmer-Lloyd.
The Beatles mentioned the paper in their 1966 single "Paperback Writer".
Alan Partridge, a television comedy character, states that it is "arguably the best newspaper in the world" in an episode of I'm Alan Partridge.
In the Harry Potter series, Vernon Dursley is depicted as reading the Daily Mail.
In the adult satirical comic Viz strip Jack Black, a near-fascist "Boy's Own" adventure strip, the Daily Mail is the only newspaper anyone reads in the village, until in one episode an incoming Guardian reader is uncovered as protecting an Al Qaeda cell.
In the BBC comedy show Little Britain, the racist Women's Institute member Maggie Blackamoor is depicted as reading the Daily Mail.
The satirical magazine Private Eye often refers to the Daily Mail as the Daily Hate Mail. In the Eye's frequent spoofs of the Mail's style, the by-line is usually "Sir David Fester": this refers to Sir David English (see above) and to a court case between the two publications, which the Mail won and then ran the story under the title "Anatomy of a festering lie".
The satirical website www.theVoiceofReason.co.uk
spoofs the Daily Mail as the Daily Moan because of its frequently preachy editorial stance.
In the BBC comedy show Monkey Dust, the editor of the Daily Mail is portrayed as a pile of excrement, with overtly bigoted and racist front pages of the paper shown in the background on a regular basis.
On an episode of Room 101 Linda Smith referred to fans of Tim Henman as "awful people with copies of the Daily Mail in their pants". The show's presenter, Paul Merton, responded by saying "Well, it's very absorbent".
The spoof TV listings site and TV show TVGoHome included a reality show entitled Daily Mail Island in which contestants were denied access to any form of media except for the Daily Mail. As the show progresses the inhabitants become increasingly right-wing and irrational.
David Aaronovitch, writing in The Observer, referred to the self-righteous as "those who have the Daily Mail where their hearts should be".
In the comedy series Extras a copy of the Daily Mail appears with the headline "Asylum seekers are eating our pets."
Stephen Fry, on the BBC series Comedy Connections, described some fans of A Bit Of Fry And Laurie as "…a massive audience out there for people who may not understand a single word... a rather strange constituency of Daily Mail readers..."
Hugh Laurie has said "The Daily Mail ... a crushing embarrassment. I wouldn't feed it to my worst dog".
A character in A Bit of Fry and Laurie says she is a Daily Mail reader because she prefers it to a
The Irish nationalist song "The Man from the Daily Mail" attacks the Daily Mail (and British media in general) for its coverage of Irish issues and portrayal of Irish people.
Bloc Party's "Hunting for Witches" from their 2007 album A Weekend In the City illustrates the Terrorist Attacks on London's transportation system in July 2005 and contains the lyric "The Daily Mail says the enemy's among us, taking our women, and taking our jobs."
The title track from The Smiths' album The Queen Is Dead features the lines "I said Charles, don't you ever crave to appear on the front of the Daily Mail dressed in your Mother's bridal veil."
The Daily Mail is a favourite target of a number of satirical websites such as the
"Rockall Times" and Uncyclopedia
In Series E of BBC TV show QI the episode dedicated to Europe contained a round called Call My (Euro) Bluff given to lampoon the rabid xenophobia the paper regularly displays towards supposed European legislation - "laws" declaring that the sale of curved bananas is to be made illegal, tightrope walkers have to wear hard hats due to health and safety regulations, sausages can't be called sausages anymore and trawlermen have to wear hairnets whilst fishing were all revealed to be completely untrue, despite the Mail, and other newspapers such as The Sun, reporting them as fact.
City & Finance
City & Finance is the business part of the Daily Mail, and the Financial Mail is the business paper free with the Mail on Sunday. City & Finance features City News and the results from the London Stock Exchange, and also has its own website
http://www.thisismoney.co.uk/ called This is Money. The weekly Financial Mail paper includes the award winning Financial Mail Enterprise, focusing on small business.
Femail is an extensive part of the Daily Mail's newspaper and website, being one of four main features on dailymail.co.uk others being News, TV & Showbiz and Sport. It is designed for women and is simlar to magazines with life stories such as Bella Magazine and Take A Break.
Current cartoon strips that are in the Daily Mail include Garfield which moved from the Daily Express in 2006 and is also included in the Mail on Sunday. It is usually written by Jim Davis. I Don't Believe It is another 3/4 part strip, written by Dick Millington. Odd Streak and The strip show, which is shown in 3D are one part strips. Up and Running is a strip distributed by Knight Features and Fred Basset follows the life of the dog of the same name in a two part strip in the Daily Mail since July 8,
1963. The Gambles are another feature in the Mail on Sunday.
The Daily Mail Weekend is a TV guide published by the Daily Mail, included free with the Mail every Saturday. Weekend magazine, launched in October 1993, is issued free with the Saturday Daily Mail and has more ABC1 readers than any other National Magazine.
Weekend was originally launched with the intention of raising the Saturday circulation up to around 1.8 million copies. Today the Daily Mail on a Saturday circulates over 3.2 million copies and is read by over 6.4 million adults.
The guide does not use a magazine-type layout but chooses a newspaper style similar to the Daily Mail itself. In April 2007 the "Weekend" had a major revamp which included new articles and the end of other ones, such as the popular Nigel Andrew's View next to the guide every day. A feature changed during the revamp was a dedicated Freeview channel page to ensure that the guide was more 'user-friendly' for people with the most used digital box in Great Britain.
You magazine is a women's magazine featured in the Mail on Sunday. Its mix of in-depth features plus fashion, beauty advice, practical insights on health and relationships, food recipes and interiors pages make it a regular read for over 3 million women (and 2.3 million men) every week.
The Mail markets it, with Live magazine, as the only paper to have a magazine for him (Live) and for her (You). Although the Mail on Sunday is not the best selling Sunday newspaper in the United Kingdom (that is The News of the World), it is read by over six million a
Daily Mail writers
In recent times, like some other British newspapers (see, for example, Bruce Anderson's contributions to The Independent), the Daily Mail has taken to including some columnists with a very different political stance from the paper's own editorial line. Notable in the Mail's case is Roy Hattersley, a former Labour minister, who still takes a classic social-democratic line and nowadays attacks his own party very much from the left. Hattersley has written frequently for both the Mail and its political antithesis The Guardian, as has Geoffrey
Roy Hattersley - former Labour Party deputy leader
Graham Poll - (Sportsmail) former No.1 English referee
Michael Winner - film director
William Comyns Beaumont (left in 1903 to create The Bystander)
Simon Heffer (left in 2005 to join the Daily Telegraph)
Paul Johnson (left the Mail in 2001; now writes for the Daily Telegraph and The Spectator)
Lynda Lee Potter (wrote for the Mail from 1967 until her death in 2004)
William Le Queux -- A prolific writer of invasion literature in the pre-First World War period.
Valentine Williams (1883–1946) General news correspondent and, during the First World War, chief of the Daily Mail war service. Later a popular mystery novelist. Source: Williams' memoir, The World of Action (London: Hamish Hamilton, 1938), which describes his career and journalistic adventures.
Ian Wooldridge, a sportswriter on the paper from 1961 until his death in 2007
Daily Mail photographers
Dr. Kenneth Wilson
Mail on Sunday writers
Harry Blackwood (North-East England area only)
A to Z directory, please click on the links below to find your favourite
news or to contact the media to tell your story:
Richard (1980). Fellow Travellers of the Right: British Enthusiasts
for Nazi Germany, 1933-9. London: Constable. ISBN 0-09-463460-2.
S. J. (1996). The Great Outsiders: Northcliffe, Rothermere and the
Daily Mail. London: Weidenfeld & Nicolson. ISBN 0-297-81653-5.
Have All The Goals Gone?. The Guardian Sport. The Guardian.
you vote, give Mr Blair a bloody nose, Daily Mail, 5th May 2005
Fantasy Island. The New Statesman.
in the dock", Polly Toynbee, The Guardian, March 26,
‘gay gene’: media and scientific representations
Basset is back. C21 Media.
your expectations for a safer future ......
The World in Your Hands
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