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Leith Agency 60watt Newhaven

Leith naked photo explained

By The Drum, Administrator

February 18, 2010 | 5 min read

The Drum was handed this rather disturbing photo by Iris’ Pete Armstrong of a Leith away-day way back in 1993. We asked The Leith's creative boss Gerry Farrell what the hell was going on.

“Eh, eh, eh, fookin fishin? Fishin? What about mountain biking? Go-karting? Quad biking? River-rafting?..”

“Pete,” I said, “You’re from Liverpool. Think of it as robbing trout.” That settled him enough to get him in my Toyota.”

We arrived at our weekend retreat, a four-star hotel overlooking a lake in the middle of the Yorkshire countryside. It didn’t take long for Pete to notice that it was full of old folk. “Eh eh eh”, (am I stereotyping?), “It’s full of old folk.” Now Gareth started to get a bit arsey.

“It’s Friday night and I’m in a hotel in the middle of nowhere with a bunch of old people and tomorrow’s Saturday and I’ve got to get up at 9am and write press ads all day. Fucking great!”
It wasn’t going too well. Still, dinner was riotous. I sat back, lit a cigar, downed another double brandy and congratulated myself on bringing this all in on budget, flyfishing instructors included. At which point I realised I hadn’t allowed for any drinks. Oh dear.

Next morning there was mutiny in the air. Pete and Gareth had headaches and were sulking. But at lunchtime everything changed.

Pretty girls began to arrive with overnight bags. By the time we’d done our press ads and sat down for dinner, everybody was smiling.

A hen party had entered the building. As we sat down to dinner, they filed upstairs to a private room directly opposite our long table.

Halfway through dinner there was a huge cheer from behind their closed door. The male stripper had arrived. Now you know when you do a pitch and they leave you alone to set up? I’ve always harboured a wee comedy fantasy for the agency team to be buck-naked when the clients come back in. I know, I’m so hilarious. I put it to the boys that when the girls emerged from their private room and saw us in all our pasty glory, they’d be straight over. As you can unfortunately see from the photo, most of us took the challenge.

It got hazy after that. The girls came over right enough. I can recall that there was jiggery-pokery, shenanigans and malarkey – but strictly no rumpy-pumpy. I remember Dougal manning a piano with a drunk girl lying across the lid, looking down and giggling at Dougal’s knob which was hanging out of his boxers as he battered out Abba’s Golden Greats. (We’d seen it too but we didn’t tell him.)

The bride-to-be quietly told Ged Edmondson that she liked to bite men’s bottoms. I threatened to headbutt one of my copywriters for hiding my shoes. And somebody fell into the log-basket and went to sleep.

The fishing instructor was wasting his time next morning. Me and Nanson were hauling out rainbow trout, right enough but most of the lads were sleeping it off on the bank or watching Man United in their rooms.

We went two grand over budget. I slunk into John Rowley’s office first thing on the Monday morning with a pair of scissors and cut my company Visa into small pieces in front of him.

But when I look at this photo now and the creative characters in it, I reckon it was probably money well spent.

Who's Who & Where Are They Now

1. Dougal Wilson -

director, Blink Productions, London

2. Pete Armstrong -

creative director, Iris, Manchester

3. Gareth Howells -

co-founder and joint creative director, Newhaven, Edinburgh

4. Graham Doran -

founder, Graham Doran Ltd, Leeds

5. Chris Landy -

freelance creative, Amsterdam (ex 180 and Wieden+Kennedy Amsterdam)

6. Paul Moran -

freelance creative, London

7. Lee Hempstock -

freelance creative, Amsterdam (ex 180 and Wieden+Kennedy Amsterdam)

8. Pete Mill -

co-founder, 60 Watt, Edinburgh

9. Gerry Farrell -

creative director, The Leith

10. Alex Flint -

creative, Goodby, Silverstein and Partners, San Francisco

Do you have an odd photo with an even odder story to go with it? If so, please email it to The Drum's editor Richard Draycott so we can feature it.

Leith Agency 60watt Newhaven

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