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The British Cheese Board record a cheese-themed national anthem

The announcement that The British Cheese Board wants people to come up with original lyrics to the tune of God Save the Queen, Land of Hope and Glory or Jerusalem, did rather well in the media last week.

Normally, there are lots and lots of good reasons why a story works.

In this case, one suspects, there are just two: it’s about a national treasure and it’s so abundantly odd that it just makes sense (in a twisted sort of way).

We’ve all come up with perfectly decent ideas that have either never got out of the brainstorm room – too self-serving, too commercially obvious, too stupid, unlikely to deliver the message, you name it – or that the client has dismissed as just too … odd.

Reading the coverage of this tall tale, the Cheddar National Anthem story fails every single one of the tests. It’s utterly ridiculous, it’s as commercial and salesy as it’s possible to get and it’s wantonly daft.

However, if there’s one lesson that we should learn from its evident success, it is that sometimes stories that cost you almost nothing (even a quick quote from Alex James and the cost of a couple of tickets to his festival wasn’t going to break the bank) are worth a go.

Because in every newsroom across the land, there’s always room for one “and finally …”. This week, it was this one that raised the necessary smile.

James Gordon-MacIntosh is a managing partner at Hope&Glory PR and from time-to-time pens Spinning Around, a blog that he describes as “thinking out loud”

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