Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Exploits of a Bored Politician

Newspaper article Evening Chronicle (Newcastle, England)

Exploits of a Bored Politician

Article excerpt

Byline: By Ray Marshall

How prostitute scandal brought down minister

Sex, drugs and the House of Commons ( that was the life of the late Lord Lambton, who died last Saturday aged 84.

While serving as a junior Cabinet minister in the Ted Heath government of 1973, he was photographed in bed with two women smoking cannabis.

In the resulting scandal, which also embroiled another Tory, Lord Jellico, he was forced to resign from politics.

The Tory government was in a jittery mood because of the Profumo scandal and the possibility of spies and blackmail, but while nothing of this kind emerged as a result of Lord Lambton's indiscretions, it still became the top story of the day.

Lord Lambton, as he liked to be referred to, had just lost the battle to keep his title, and had complained of having too little to do in his job.

He was elected to Durham City Council and to Durham County Council in 1947, serving for two years. He first stood for Parliament at the 1945 general election in the safe Labour seat of Chester-le-Street, then Bishop Auckland in 1950.

He became Member of Parliament for Berwick-upon-Tweed in 1951, where he served until 1973.

He served as Parliamentary UnderSecretary for Defence (RAF) from 1970 until 1973.

Following his resignation, Lambton told television presenter Robin Day he had used prostitutes because "people sometimes like variety. It's as simple as that".

But MI5 officer Charles Elwell, who interviewed Lambton, said: "He rather implied the futility of the job was one of the reasons he had got up to mischief."

A month after his resignation he gave an interview which was published in the Chronicle, claiming Britain was a hypocritical country.

"Our country is still hypocritical and self-modest," he said. "The thing which shocked the English most is the fact I was discovered with two girls at the same time, one of whom was black. …

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