Down the Procurement Pub with the Beatles, the Front Covers, Grahame Ball, Mike Pringle, Griffin and Glen Frey

Gerhart KWe couldn't resist another picture or three from the Alps. This gentleman with me in a lovely bar in Obertauern called the Kringsalm is Gerhard Krings, who with his two brothers started with nothing and has been a driving force over the last 50 years in develop1ing the town into the successful skiing resort it is today. The family own hotels, bars, ski-lifts, a power plant ...!

But perhaps even more notably, his claim to musical fame is that he was George Harrison of the Beatles. Well, his skiing stunt double anyway.Beatles double Krings

When the group filmed the ski sequences for the 1965 film Help! in the village, they needed ski doubles (the Beatles had never skied before) and Gerhard was chosen to play George - here he is in a picture from the bar getting his wig fitted, and the shot below shows him in the tall hat with the other doubles.

Beatles doubles 2I was looking at the pictures on the wall in the bar last week when he came over and said "do you like the Beatles"? The conversation went from there ... He also said they had no idea how famous the Beatles were at the time (or what they would become), and that the filming took two weeks. A bit of music history, anyway.


Whilst we are in musical mode, the Front Covers, the band led by David Smith, ex DWP CPO and CIPS President in 2013, is playing at a special "Battle of the Bands" at The Hare and Hounds, Claygate near Esher in Surrey (@HareClaygate) on Saturday 30th January starting at 8.30pm, to raise money for The Royal Marsden Cancer Charity. We will be there and hope to see more procurement folk in the audience! It is free entry, but no doubt there will be an opportunity to donate to the very worthy cause.


Mike Pringle is leaving Determine, previously Selectica, who bought Iasta (for whom Mike worked for some years). Hope you followed that ... He was latterly the sales lead for the UK, Benelux and Switzerland for the firm. Mike is well known, liked and respected in the procurement world, having started his career as a procurement practitioner before moving over to the solution provider side. He's going to launch a new business/career as an Executive Coach and also provide some consulting services in the field of procurement & supply chain. We wish him success and good luck - he's always been an excellent person to work and spend time with.


Congratulations to Grahame Ball, CIPS stalwart and current Trustee, who according to the Construction Enquirer joined Balfour Beatty this week as International Procurement Director. "Ball takes on a new role but former UK Procurement Director Martin Chown is leaving the company. One insider said: “It was all quite sudden and the official line is that Martin has decided to leave the company." Chown himself was a director at the Government Procurement Service prior to Balfour - that organisation (Balfour I mean) has been a bit of a graveyard for senior procurement folk, to be frank, so we really hope it works out well for Ball!


We will get back to new music soon in this slot, but after Bowie, more condolences this week with the news that both Glen Frey, ex of the Eagles, and Griffin, drummer with Mott the Hoople, both died this week at the early age of 67. Two of my favourite bands of all time, actually (the earlier stuff only in the case of the Eagles).

Here are a couple of tracks to remember them by. Much of the Mott stuff on YouTube is them miming on Top of the Pops, etc. At least this one is a real live performance, playing one of the very best rock songs ever. In the case of Lyin' Eyes, it is one of my very favourite songs, one of the few I can sing along to from start to finish, and it features Frey on lead vocals - he wrote it with Don Henley.


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