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'Mr John McCann? Ah! Jolly good. Downing Street here. I have Gordon Brown on the line for you'

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'Mr John McCann? Ah! Jolly good. Downing Street here. I have Gordon Brown on the line for you'

Post by Tony Bennett on 03.01.11 23:08

The Chancellor of the Exchequer's call to AstraZeneca's sales rep, Mr John McCann, on Friday 18 May 2007, just 15 days after Madeleine McCann was reported missing.

This call was made precisely four days before the McCanns' chief public relations spokesman, Clarence Mitchell, flew out to Praia da Luz. By that time, he'd no doubt already fixed with Roman Catholic Archbishop Cormac Murphy O'Connor for the Pope to meet the McCanns in the Vatican - not forgetting a 'phone call to Sir Philip Green asking him to 'chip in' with a private jet to take them there.

By jingo, there was an awful lot of high profile activity going on at the very top levels of British government at that time.

I wonder why?

John McCann seems to be doing nicely now at AstraZeneca - see link at end of article:


From The Times

May 22, 2007

Family move the world in battle to bring their daughter home

Our correspondent visits the kitchen headquarters of the McCann's global campaign as the missing girl's father calls upon every contact he can muster

Martin Fletcher

It is late Sunday night, and in the kitchen of a large house in the Jordanhill area of Glasgow John McCann, uncle of the abducted four-year-old Madeleine McCann, is brainstorming with Andrew and Jill Renwick and Paul Macintyre, medical friends of Madeleine’s parents, Gerry and Kate.

They talk of getting bookmarks with Madeleine’s picture inserted into every copy of the final Harry Potter book this summer. They are enlisting the help of the actors Ewan McGregor and Daniel Craig and the director Stephen Frears at the Cannes Film Festival. They want to highlight Madeleine’s plight at the Tour de France, at the summer’s international golf tournaments, and at next weekend’s grand prix in Monaco where the Spyker team has agreed to put posters on its cars.

They want appeals for information screened in cinemas across Europe, and Mrs Renwick suggests asking the cartoon channel Nickelodeon to broadcast Madeleine’s picture.

It all sounds hugely ambitious, but in the 18 days since Madeleine’s abduction the McCann family and their friends have shown that little is beyond them.

Resourceful, tireless and determined, they have mounted a DIY campaign to find Madeleine unprecedented in its scale and scope. They have made Madeleine’s face ubiquitous. They have turned her into one of the few people known internationally by a single name.

The website went live last Tuesday. A chain e-mail begun by Philomena McCann, an Ullapool teacher who is Madeleine’s aunt, has carried her picture into tens of millions of homes worldwide. The campaign has attracted offers of more than £2.5 million in rewards from the likes of J. K. Rowling, Sir Richard Branson, Sir Philip Green and the Scottish tycoon Stephen Winyard. More than 50,000 people have sent messages of support, and John McCann expects the campaign to have raised more than £1 million by the week’s end.

The campaign had an appeal broadcast on Wembley’s giant screens at last Saturday’s FA Cup final – reaching a potential audience of 500 million in 160 countries, and at the Uefa Cup final in Glasgow between the Spanish teams Espanyol and Sevilla. It has enlisted the help of Cristiano Ronaldo, David Beckham and John Terry, and of Liverpool’s players before tomorrow’s European Champions League final.

England’s cricketers wore yellow ribbons at Lord’s. The racing drivers Jenson Button and David Coulthard have put Madeleine’s pictures on their websites. BP, Exxon, McDonald’s and other retail chains such as Carrefour have agreed to display posters at thousands of outlets across Europe.

Gordon Brown has pledged his support. Last Friday [18 May - T.B.] John McCann was dining with friends when Downing Street called to say that the Chancellor was on the line. Minutes later Mr McCann’s mobile – on which he takes hundreds of calls daily – ran out of power, cutting off Britain’s next Prime Minister in mid-sentence. Yesterday morning, as Mr McCann was talking to The Times, his mobile rang again. It was Revenue & Customs, calling at Mr Brown’s request to discuss how the fund could gain charitable status.

As John McCann points out, it is not bad for a “bunch of amateurs”. The campaign has now employed professional media and legal advisers, and will shortly take on a manager and financial administrator, but it has for the most part been inspired and run by Madeleine’s parents and a small circle of relatives and friends – several of them medical colleagues of the McCanns – using every contact they can muster.

Their link to the football world was Stuart Hillis, a Glasgow cardiologist who worked with Scotland’s football team and knew Sir Alex Ferguson. A Leicester cardiologist and rugby fan roped in Martin Johnson. A former pupil of Philomena McCann’s set up the website. An Aberdeen GP enlisted the oil companies through executives he knows.

When Gerry McCann promised to leave “no stone unturned” in his hunt for his daughter, he meant it. His doctor friends have mobilised medical associations throughout Europe, and are doing the same with other professional organisations representing lawyers, dentists, accountants, ophthalmologists and the like. Appeals for Madeleine are now available on the internet in 16 languages. The campaign is about to distribute 1.2 million leaflets at London’s three main airports.

Everyone wants to help. Lorry drivers supplying Glasgow’s fruit market are dropping off posters at all the cafés and petrol stations on their routes across Europe. Travel agents send out pictures with customers’ tickets.
The campaign has two nerve centres. One is in Praia da Luz. The other is the Glasgow sitting room of John McCann, 48, who is on indefinite leave from his job as a medical rep for the pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca. There he fields endless e-mails and telephone calls.

Arguably the campaign has been almost too successful. The Portuguese police may be so overwhelmed with tips that the critical one will be overlooked. “I’m a bit scared that something will get swamped,” John McCann says.
The other danger is that after so much exposure, Madeleine’s kidnappers will never dare to take her anywhere public.

The campaigners are exhausted, but remain resolutely optimistic. They talk of things they will do “when Madeleine is back”, of using unspent money to help to find other abducted children.

“The thing that’s kept us going is hope, hope and prayer,” said John McCann. “Someone out there must know something about it. The world is too small nowadays for this sort of thing to happen and just be buried.”
But they admit to black moments. “I’m worst in the mornings,” said Andrew Renwick. John McCann admits bursting into tears on the treadmill one day, but says: “It’s usually late at night it hits me.”

The worst scenario of all would be for the weeks to turn into months, and the months into years, with the family never hearing of her again. John McCann finds that too awful to contemplate. “I don’t know how we’d cope with that,” he says.


Also see this link:
Tony Bennett

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Re: 'Mr John McCann? Ah! Jolly good. Downing Street here. I have Gordon Brown on the line for you'

Post by crikey on 03.01.11 23:30

Excuse me for asking this, but what on earth is that about?


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Seek, and ye shall find

Post by Tony Bennett on 03.01.11 23:37

@crikey wrote:Excuse me for asking this, but what on earth is that about?
I'm surprised you should ask, surely the Times journalist gives a pretty clear report, does he not?

For further enlightenment, however, please visit this thread:
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Re: 'Mr John McCann? Ah! Jolly good. Downing Street here. I have Gordon Brown on the line for you'

Post by crikey on 03.01.11 23:44

I expect to be told off for this but it seems that the media did help the Mccanns a lot on raising her awarness. Not every missing child is afforded this, or should i say missing persons. Maybe they should all be afforded this but it doesn't happen. I will read the link you have provided thanl you


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Re: 'Mr John McCann? Ah! Jolly good. Downing Street here. I have Gordon Brown on the line for you'

Post by crikey on 03.01.11 23:45

Or i would if i had special powers to get into that forum you provided a link to.


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A secret thread, no longer secret

Post by Tony Bennett on 04.01.11 0:16

@crikey wrote:Or Ii would if I had special powers to get into that forum you provided a link to.
I apologise, I didn't realise you were not able to see that thread.

To save you reading through that whole thread, here is a convenient summary:


I'm compiling an article which will try to list all those who rushed out to Praia da Luz during May to assist the McCanns.

I don't mean journalists and TV crews, I mean people who seem to have gone to, well, help the McCanns, rather than to look for Madeleine.

It's not even at the first draft stage yet, but I thought this might be a good forum on which to seek further information.

Here is the article, which I shall update regularly as more information (hopefully) is received.



Here's a provisional list, without checking all the references and links:

Alex Woolfall

Came out almost immediately, Head of Crisis Management at Bell Pottinger. In other words, one of the top dogs at one of the nation's top media manipulation, sorry, public relations firms

Clarence Mitchell

Head of the government's Media Monitoring Unit at the time, whose job he boasted was 'to control what come sout in the media'. Came out in May, and has been the McCanns' chief public relations adviser ever since. No doubt he would have been involved in government decision-making about the case from Day One - indeed he boasted that before coming to Praia da Luz he had persuaded Cardinal Cormac Murphy O'Connor to arrange for the McCanns to meet the Pope

David Hopkins, Managing Director of Mark Warners

(see below under CCP heading)

Three (?) police officers from Leicestershire Police

Including Superintendent/Commander Bob Small, who advised Jane Tanner on 13 May shortly before she adamantly identified Robert Murat as the abductor she''d seen 10 days earlier

British Embassy and Consular Officials - several by all accounts

Control Risks Group

Two men from CRG had discussions with the McCanns and were certrainly there within days, despite Dr Gerald McCann saying in late May to a TV interviewer that they had no plans to employ private investigators. They were Kenneth Farrow and Michael Keenan. Mr Farrow is the ex-head of the Economic Crime Unit in the City of London Police and Mr Keenan an ex-Superintendent from the Metropolitan Police with specialist fraud and investigative experience. On 25 May 2007, just 22 days after Madeleine was reported missing, in a BBC interview with Jane Hill, the McCanns were asked if, now that they had already netted £300,000 in their ‘No Stone Unturned’ fund, they would use any of that money for private investigators. Dr Gerry McCann responded: “The advice we have received is that private investigations will not help at the moment”. Despite this clear claim, a private investigation agency known as Control Risks Group announced in September that they had been helping the McCanns since May and ‘were in regular contact’ with them throughout. Iin the early afternoon of Sunday 13 May 2007, Jane Tanner, one of the McCanns’ friends and the person who says she saw an abductor, spoke to ‘some of the people that Kate and Gerry brought in’. She was referring to Control Risks Group. Who brought them in and who agreed to pay for them? Why were Control Risks Group brought in so soon? To help find a missing child? Or for other reasons?

Foreign and Commonwealth Office staff

Sheree Dodd? - or were there others?

Centre for Crisis Psychology (CCP)

The shadowy group from Skipton, supposedly experienced in disaster counselling, who sent out two of its top people within two days of Madeleine disappearing, to give counselling to the McCanns. They came out very early indeed, considering that there was at that time a real possibility that Madeleine could be found.

On Monday 14th May, the Craven Herald [Yorkshire Newspaper] had carried the following report:

“Two specialist trauma counsellors from Skipton have flown out to Portugal to help the devastated parents of missing four-year-old Madeleine McCann. Consultants Alan Pike and Martin Alderton from the Centre for Crisis Psychology (CCP), based at Broughton Hall, have been by the side of Gerry and Kate McCann since their daughter Madeleine was abducted…The two experts were appointed by Mark Warner, the company which manages the resort, to assist Mr and Mrs McCann, both 38, on how best to deal with the stress and trauma of their terrible ordeal…

“Mr Pike, who is leading the team, flew over to the resort with Mark Warner managing director, David Hopkins, the day after Madeleine disappeared. Mr Alderton, who has counselled those affected by major disasters across the country, arrived the following day. A spokesman for Mark Warner said: ‘The Centre for Crisis Psychology (CCP) came highly recommended by industry partners and have been known to us for some time. Their experience in dealing with a variety of incidents is second to none’.

“Staff from the Skipton centre also visited Mark Warner's head office in London to offer counselling to employees last Wednesday. A spokesman for the Skipton centre said: ‘We are working with Mark Warner and cannot discuss any information because of commercial confidentiality. We have got two trauma consultants working on the incident. Everyone all over the country has been gripped, it is a very difficult case’. Mr Pike's experience in trauma work includes domestic violence and abuse, child abuse, emergency planning and assessment, and adoption.

Since joining CCP in 2004, he has been involved in consulting with companies following road traffic accidents, personal attacks, terrorist bombings, shootings, robberies, drowning and staff bereavement. Mr Alderton provided clinical support following the 2003 Manchester motorway minibus crash in which seven people died”.

That was a very heavy degree of involvement from this Skipton-based group from a very early stage. On 4th May, both Mark Warner’s managing director, David Hopkins, and Alan Pike, flew out to Praia da Luz. An unspecified number of Mark Warners’ staff were ‘counselled’ at Mark Warners HQ. Already, it was clear that this was no ordinary case. The ‘Craven Herald’ added for good measure: “The focus has shifted from a local search for Madeleine to an international child abduction inquiry, amid suggestions she may have been taken out of Portugal”.

From this report we may deduce that, already, Skipton was very close to the nerve centre of the operation to support the McCanns. The company CCP appears to have been deployed in the past by Richard Branson, who of course has strongly and financially backed the McCanns, and who also is or was the President of the ‘UK Citizens Arrested Abroad Committee'.
Tony Bennett

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Re: 'Mr John McCann? Ah! Jolly good. Downing Street here. I have Gordon Brown on the line for you'

Post by Judge Mental on 04.01.11 1:51

@crikey wrote:Or i would if i had special powers to get into that forum you provided a link to.

big grin

@ crikey

Stick around for a while, and you will be granted many special powers. We usually issue special powers to the posters who have a keen eye or a nose for spotting criminal activities and discrepancies.

We are always interested in our new posters views on the McCann case. There are lots of things to see and do here, so do not be overwhelmed and take your time. We have some of the most helpful posters you could wish for in here, so do not be shy in asking for help at any time.
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McCanns apt & hire car

Blood and cadaver alerts
dismissed by UK Government

Retired DCI Gonçalo Amaral: "The English can always present the conclusions to which they themselves arrived in 2007. Because they know, they have the evidence of what happened - they don't need to investigate anything. All this is now a mere 'show off'."

Retired murder DCI Colin Sutton: "I would also like to make the point that Operation Grange was so restricted from the start as to be destined to fail."

Assistant Commissioner Mark Rowley made public on national TV that Operation Grange is a complete fraud.

Ex-DCI Andy Redwood had a "revelation moment" on BBC's Crimewatch on 14th October 2013 when he announced that Operation Grange had eliminated the Tanner sighting - which opened up the 'window of opportunity', in accordance with their remit, to allow the fake abduction to happen.

Despite "irrelevant behaviour" from blood and cadaver dogs in the McCann's apartment, on Kate McCann's clothes, and in the car they hired three weeks after Maddie disappeared, Ex-Chief Inspector, Ian Horrocks, said: "The thought that Kate and Gerry McCann had anything to do with the death of their daughter is frankly preposterous."

Gerry McCann called for example to be made of 'trolls'. SKY News reporter Martin Brunt doorstepped Brenda Leyland on 2 October 2014. She was then found dead in a Leicester hotel room. Brenda paid the price. She paid with her life.

Ex-Deputy Chief Constable, Jim Gamble QPM, congratulated SKY reporter, Martin Brunt, on twitter for doorstepping Brenda Leyland on behalf of Gerry McCann.

Prime Minister Theresa May introduces Prime Suspect Kate McCann to Royalty: The Duchess of Gloucester.

Good Cop Down: The reality of being a police whistleblower