Review of 1998

Article excerpt

REVIEW OF 1998

THAT WAS THE YEAR THAT WAS

JANUARY

There was embarrassment for Jack Straw after he found that his son William was involved in drugs.

Geoff Boycott denied hitting his girlfriend but was found guilty by a French court. Canada froze in an ice storm.

Financial turmoil in Asia led to fears of a Wall Street crash but American investors confounded the dire predictions.

Love is the sweetest thing: TV's Anthea Turner announced that she and husband Peter Powell were splitting and that she was involved with businessman Grant Bovey.

PM's aide Alastair Campbell denied telling Robin Cook to end his marriage to wife Margaret. But was the news broken at the Heathrow departure lounge?

Tony's Cronies: Gordon (Brown) and Tony (Blair)'s relationship was strained with the publication of a biography of the Chancellor.

And it emerged that the Government had spent pounds 11 million on parties and junkets in nine months. Happy New Year!

Shenanigans at the White House: Clinton was questioned by lawyers over a sexual harassment case brought by ex-clerk Paula Jones. He went on TV to deny an affair with an unknown White House intern, Monica Lewinsky.

A Year in Northern Ireland: Northern Ireland Secretary Mo Mowlam went into the Maze prison to meet Loyalist prisoners. A new peace plan was put forward by Tony Blair.

Sporting triumphs and disasters: London Scottish player Simon Fenn needed more than 25 stitches in his ear after being bitten by a Bath opponent.

The Great British Weather: 90 mph winds caused flooding and power cuts. Insurers said the bill came to pounds 100 million.

A Royal Flush: The Queen Mum fell over and broke her hip.

Saddam Hussein escapes again: HMS Illustrious went to the Gulf after Saddam Hussein hampered attempts by UN weapons inspectors to do their work in Iraq. And Britain and the US geared up for air strikes.

And FINALLY: A pair of enterprising pigs, Butch and Sundance - who soon became known as the Tamworth Two - captured the nation's hearts when they went on the run from a Wiltshire abattoir. They were caught, but spared the trip to the slaughterhouse.

Personality of the month: Mo Mowlam, for talking to Loyalist terrorists inside the Maze.

FEBRUARY

Figures showed NHS waiting lists were growing, Labour said a baby dome would be spawned in Greenwich and the old 50 pence piece went out of circulation.

And more than 5,000 beacons blazed across Britain in protest at the Government's countryside policy as farmers continued to struggle with BSE.

Love is the sweetest thing: Anthea and Grant appeared in public together. But did he send his ex-wife Della flowers on Valentine's Day?

Tony's Cronies: The Prime Minister warned ministers that there would be curbs on numbers attending the World Cup. …