Sex at the Kitchen Door, the BNP Threat in Burnley, and the "Lezzy Lobby" Revisited. (the Insider)

By Routledge, Paul | New Statesman (1996), June 2, 2003 | Go to article overview

Sex at the Kitchen Door, the BNP Threat in Burnley, and the "Lezzy Lobby" Revisited. (the Insider)


Routledge, Paul, New Statesman (1996)


The secret of Tessa Jowell's surprisingly secure tenancy of ministerial office is out. The Culture Secretary regularly gives Alastair Campbell a lift home to north London in her ministerial limousine. Ergo, she is unsackable. The question arises: why doesn't Ali C use his own car? He is hardly likely to get done for drink-driving.

To Politico's, for the launch of Lord (Bernard) Donoughue's autobiography, The Heat of the Kitchen, which is surprisingly good. One bit of heat took place in his mother's kitchen in a Northants village. Bernard was a small boy sitting in his favourite bolt-hole, under the table, when his mother came home to be "given one" (his phrase) against the back door by one of her fancied lorry drivers. "Growing up with mother was certainly educational," he observes. No wonder he was attracted to Wilson's kitchen cabinet. Donoughue also recalls his dismissal from the Times ("an above-average brothel"), where he was briefly Harry Evans's intellectual sidekick. He remembers that, as father of the NUJ chapel, I had to defend him when he was sacked in March 1982.

MPs could not quite understand why Alan Whitehead, the unknown junior minister, was sacked after the last election. He had done nothing wrong. In fact, he hadn't time to do anything at all. Now it can be told. Sally "Feeble" Keeble, the international development minister, was on the defenestration list, but the chief whip, Hilary Armthtwong, intervened to save a Blair Babe. The Foreign Office minister Mike O'Brien was sent to mollify Whitehead, assuring him that sacked members of the government can be rehabilitated if they keep their noses clean. Don't depend on it, Brother Whitehead. …

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