THURSDAY 10 MAY 2012 3:43 PM


Former News of the World editor, Andy Coulson, says he approached the role of director of communications to David Cameron reluctantly.

During his appearance before the Leveson inquiry today, Coulson says he met with George Osborne to discuss the comms position “with a degree of reluctance,” and claims there were no improper discussions between News International and the Conservative party.

Coulson says his appointment to director of communications after serving 18 years as a journalist, including the position of editor at News of the World, was not an overwhelming transition.

He says: “I had been the editor of a national newspaper for many years that involves politics as we have discussed. I was dealing with issues, I ran campaigns.

I aimed to be in tune with readership which was vast. Those things I'm sure were attractive. The route from journalism to politics – I was hardly the pioneer. Have been several people gone from newspapers to politics.”

Coulson was fired from Number 10 after it became apparent he was receiving payments from News International during his three and a half years of employment, and the publication of a wealth of negative coverage surrounding the phone hacking scandal.