Ding-dong over Desmond's role

The Jewish community has rallied to support Richard Desmond, the media baron and new chairman of Norwood, after a stinging attack by The Jewish Chronicle.

The world's oldest Jewish paper announced his appointment last month with the headline "Outcry at Desmond's new charity role". It included detailed accounts of other businesses owned by the Express proprietor, such as the adult TV channel Red Hot Only 18.

Desmond retaliated with a Sunday Express report linking Peter Levy, the chairman of the trust that runs The Jewish Chronicle, to a hostess club.

Supporters have pointed to his financial backing of both Jewish and non-Jewish charities, including £2m he has donated to Norwood.

A spokesman for Northern and Shell, Desmond's company, said: "It was always our intention to rely on opinion in the community."

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