Former Chad reporter appointed as Theresa May's new spokesman

The Prime Minister's new press secretary has been confirmed as former Chad reporter James Slack, inset.
The Prime Minister's new press secretary has been confirmed as former Chad reporter James Slack, inset.

A former Chad journalist has been confirmed as the Prime Minister's new Press Secretary.

James Slack, worked at the Chad before rising through the ranks of the industry, becoming a political editor at the Daily Mail, and the appointment has been described as a 'super-smart move' but some media chiefs.

James Slack  (Photo: Creative commons / Peter Richmond)

James Slack (Photo: Creative commons / Peter Richmond)

He started his career at the Mansfield Chad in the 1990s before moving on to the Nottingham Post and was the home affairs correspondent at the national daily before taking on the editorial role.

The appointment has been described as a 'super smart move' for Number 10 by Will Walden, Boris Johnson's former communications director, according to PR Week.

Another source said the appointment "shows the alignment between The Mail and Downing Street."

The news follows replacement of three of the Prime Minister's senior communications team and the role was advertised last year with a salary of £87,000.

Both Mrs May's former press secretary Helen Bower and deputy spokesman Greg Swift were announced to leave their roles at the beginning on February, and another strategist also left to join PR firm Edelman.

A Westminster political editor at a national newspaper said: "James is well respected amongst his peers in Westminster so will be able to build links between Downing Street and the media. Since becoming Prime Minister, Theresa May has suffered some gaffes with the press so has been looking to boost her media operation."

A statement on the Downing Street website said: “James Slack has been appointed as the Prime Minister’s Official Spokesperson.

“He will replace Helen Bower, who is taking up a new role as Director of Communications in the Foreign and Commonwealth Office.”