Press Counsellor: Xavier CHATEL
Deputy Press Counsellor: François COURANT
Assistant: Sylvie ARDRY
Press Attachée: Lydie NAUDIN
Senior Translator: Thomas JENSEN
Assistant Translator: Martin WOLF
Digital media: Jacques PODMORE
SW1X 7JT London
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7073 1000 (switchboard)
Please note that our email address is not monitored outside of office hours. For urgent media enquiries outside of office hours, please call +44 (0) 20 7073 1002.
The Press Office has three main functions: media watch, information and public diplomacy, and media support.
1. Media watch
The Press Office monitors the British media (newspapers and serious weeklies, television, radio, Internet sites and blogs), identifying the main issues, analysing coverage of them and noting trends and developments.
- It reports to the Ambassador, the different Embassy departments in the United Kingdom and main decision-makers in Paris. Every day, it selects 3 or 4 not-to-be-missed articles and provides a more exhaustive collection of press clippings. There is also a weekly roundup of the written press. Ad hoc reports are sent to Paris on specific issues raised in the press.
2. Information and public diplomacy
Working under the Ambassador’s direction, the Press Office acts as the Embassy’s spokesman. It regularly briefs journalists and answers their questions on French government decisions on main national and foreign policy matters.
The Press Office has a regularly up-dated Internet site with postings of France’s main foreign policy statements and information on the different French government services in the United Kingdom, Franco-British cooperation and France in general. The Internet site is also a portal for France’s other official websites.
An internal unit in the London Press Office provides English translations of some of the main official statements for the whole French diplomatic network. (Registered translators)
The Press Office endeavours to answer by email or letter, questions on France put by the general public and organizations. Questions of a more technical nature are often passed on to the appropriate Embassy services.
3. Media support
The Press Office supports British journalists wishing to secure interviews with French political VIPs and helps with the requisite organization. It can also assist French correspondents in London and journalists accompanying a French VIP.
When French VIPs come to London, the Press Office frequently organizes press conferences, briefings and interviews.