Saturday, December 23, 2006

No cause for alarm. It's simply deja vu

The Telegraph's new offices were briefly evacuated last night. For 15 minutes staff stood on the freezing pavements after a tannoy message announced an "emergency". It was a false alarm but it did left a few of them somewhat miffed.

For the longer serving faces who'd survived the countless cuts and can recall the early days of Canary Wharf, this may have been an unwelcome reminder of bygone days.

In those days, when the fabric of the newly-finished building creaked beneath your feet, the alarms went off all the time. Close to deadline, reporters would carry on working from mobiles in the lobby while subs nipped off for a pre-edition jar by the river. They were always false alarms. Often caused by the proximity of a sensor to a stir fry in the canteen kitchen.

Still, they broke the night up once in a while. Just like the printers tended to do in Fleet Street. Now can anyone remember those days?

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