Invicta PR’s Mark Cummings in sectarian abuse allegations

August 9, 2009 · Filed Under Development, Politics 

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Invicta PR’s Mark Cummings is hardly a stranger to controversy – the now failed Carltongate Project in Edinburgh, and the recent Sandown planning application by Deveron are existing legacies.

An ugly new development is being reported by The Times, though, claiming that sectarian abuse was sent from Mark Cummings’ mobile phone to Thomas Docherty, a Labour candidate Dunfermline and West Fife in the next general election.

Labour candidate ‘was sent sectarian messages’

The messages, which contained a lyric from the so-called Famine song, were allegedly sent from a mobile telephone number belonging to Mark Cummings, a lobbyist. His clients have included Premier Property Group, a firm owned by David Murray, the Rangers chairman.

Two weeks ago, Docherty, a Catholic, received a message repeating a line from the Famine song which has been banned at Rangers’ Ibrox ground, and which was recently ruled by Scottish law lords to be racist. The song pillories people of Irish descent whose ancestors came to Britain to escape the potato famine which began in 1845.

The message to Docherty allegedly read: “The famine is over. Why don’t you go home? FTP.” FTP is commonly used as an abbreviation for the sectarian phrase F*** The Pope.

It is alleged that when Docherty texted the sender to check whether the message was intended for him, he received the reply: “Yes, because you are one of them.”

As a Labour candidate, Docherty is campaigning against a proposed major housing development in Dunfermline which Cummings’s firm, Edinburgh-based Invicta Public Affairs, is lobbying for.

Quite an astonishing development, and many thanks to the Gurn for spotting it.


13 Responses to “Invicta PR’s Mark Cummings in sectarian abuse allegations”

  1. Nairnac on August 9th, 2009 8:10 pm

    Isn’t it ironic how the PR industry has such bad PR

  2. Brian Turner on August 13th, 2009 12:02 pm
  3. Brian Turner on August 14th, 2009 8:09 pm

    “Isn’t it ironic how the PR industry has such bad PR”

    I suspect the real story will turn out to be one of a misappropriated mobile phone.

  4. Mark Cummings on March 17th, 2012 3:46 pm

    Dear Brian

    I note that this post is still on your website. As you know I was cleared of these allegations. As such I would be obliged if you would remove this post otherwise I will instruct my solicitors to seek to have it removed.



  5. Brian Turner on March 17th, 2012 4:15 pm

    If you feel any old posts on this blog would benefit from an update, you are welcome to leave a comment.

    Should anyone feel any content of this website is discriminatory, offensive, or defamtory, they are more than welcome to report it to myself for removal.

    However, repeating information in the public domain falls under none of those headings.

  6. Mark Cummings on March 17th, 2012 4:31 pm

    Dear Brian

    I have now advised you that these allegations were found to be without substance and as such I was fully exonerated of these allegations. Please update your website to reflect this position. I consider your post to be misleading and as such defamatory to mynchsract and good standing. I will be consulting my lawyer to seek his advice as to your obligations to reflect the truth of this matter.

  7. Brian Turner on March 17th, 2012 9:35 pm

    Thanks for the reply – as you can see, your comments have updated the piece with regards to developments on this story.

    There is nothing defamatory in the post, and therefore absolutely nothing actionable in this. Of course, everyone has a right to consult with their lawyers on any matter they wish to.

    As director of a marketing and publishing company, I am more than aware of my company’s legal responsibilities and obligations, and they have been very much kept to in this instance.

  8. Berta Finley on March 18th, 2012 8:38 am

    This article was published by several newspapers, including The Sunday Times and Dunfermline Press. It is publicly available and in the public domain, whether on the internet or in the newspaper archives. It was a news release reporting alleged events during that period of time, straightforward really. I read the article via hard-copy, i.e. in a National newspaper.

  9. Mark Cummings on March 18th, 2012 12:00 pm


    I have now updated you on the outcome of these baseless allegations and you are no aware that the allegations were proven to be without foundation. You choose to continue to present this story on your blog as a partial account of the truth. I will be seeking legal advice as to your obligations on this matter. It is unclear to me what motivation you would have to (a) post this blog, and (b) not to remove it when you know that the allegations are untrue.



  10. Brian Turner on March 18th, 2012 2:44 pm

    As I’ve stated before, I am comfortably aware of the legal position. If anyone else needs to seek a lawyer to understand their own, they are more than welcome to.

  11. Craig Gordon on May 9th, 2012 10:52 am

    We’re fighting Invicta in Edinburgh. Check out Invicta tactics mentioned in the letter sent to Naoier University. Given that Mr Cummings hasn’t taken his threatened legal action, Ithink it tells us all we need to know. Have a look at the reference to minutes of meetings in particular.

  12. Craig Gordon on June 21st, 2012 12:37 pm

    Check out the legal action being taken in Edinburgh against local campaigner Rosy Barnes. Lawyers letter has been issued. Still no legal action against My Nairn though. Wonder why? Follow the link:

  13. Brian Turner on June 21st, 2012 1:25 pm

    > Still no legal action against My Nairn though. Wonder why?

    Plenty of experience here dealing with defamation for publishing (hence why a couple of comments on this thread have not been published), as well as knowing the difference between a potentially genuine legal claim, and heavy-handed posturing that is inherently meanginless.