'With the ludicrous amount of NHS reorganisation and reconfiguration last year, either the mighty Binley's gave up, or simply stopped sending them to HSJ'
When I was younger I had one of those books for teenagers that suggests lots of clean, legal ways for you to entertain yourself. I used to drive my mum round the bend relaying its helpful suggestions that I should redecorate my room to look like an artist's studio or make a T-shirt from a tea towel.
Among its more random ideas was to take a slow look through the Yellow Pages and see what one could discover. You may snigger, and it's hard to imagine the happy-slapping teenagers of today doing it, but I still use the. big yellow tome to fill the occasional wet afternoon. Trainspotters eat your heart out.
And luckily my job has its own equivalent to this thrill-a-minute pastime: Binley's, a hefty chunk of rainforest that is the directory of every single NHS body and manager in the health service. Excited? You will be.
HSJ has long had three copies - belonging respectively to the features, news and production desks - which are closely guarded, with slogans like 'hands off it's ours!' helpfully scrawled on the cover and, rumour has it, anti-theft devices that electrocute any would-be pilferers on their way out. the door.
It is usually published three times a year in a range of attractive colours, which, before our recent office move, could be found scattered around as a reminder of the glory days.
But what with the ludicrous amount of NHS reorganisation and reconfiguration last year, either the mighty Binley's gave up, or simply stopped sending them to HSJ. We weren't sure which.
But having been tracked down by our fearless editorial administrator Binley's now graces our desks again, this time in a rather attractive raspberry red.
But if testament was needed to the new look NHS it is this: Binley's is now considerably thinner than it used to be.
Once a most efficient doorstop or potential burglar deterrent, it is still solid enough but somehow lacks the authority of old. A constant reminder of what the NHS has been through in the last 12 months or so, it has also been reorganised and is easier to use.
For those of us unable to grasp why Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire is now in the East of England, there is at least a chance we'll be able to find what we're looking for.