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Marriage is important, and I'm sure I'll do it one day. It's not something anyone should be forced into. We're together and we're happy. That's all there is to it.

Gordon Brown on rumours that he might be planning to marry Sarah Macaulay

The evasions and weasel words on smoking and lung cancer have to stop. It really is disgraceful, especially now their own documents reveal they have known with absolute clarity since 1970 that smoking causes cancer.

Clive Bates, director of Action on Smoking and Health, on the publication of an internal 4-page memo to the managing director of Gallahers in 1970

Freddie Shepherd probably wouldn't find a decent North-eastern lass who would look at him twice.

Laura Fleury, 18, a model, on the Newcastle United chairman's alleged comments to deputy chairman Douglas Hall

A breast imposes various load distributions which have to be dealt with, and then you have to add the constraints of comfort and shapeliness. It suffers vibrational problems as the woman walks - it has various oscillation frequencies.

John Tyner, of Loughborough University, discussing work on the design of the braat the annual congress of the Institute of Physics in Brighton

I could not live with myself and talk about drugs if I did not admit I have taken them.

David Prior, Conservative MP for Norfolk North, the only MP to waive anonymity in a Commons survey of past drug use among the1997 intake

This is a fantastic overreaction. Can a handshake be so dangerous as to disrupt the entire programme that was planned?

Official travelling with Robin Cook, on the Israeli PM's snub after Cook met a Palestinian official at the site of a controversial Jewish settlement in East Jerusalem

We are now in a position to establish, for the first time in many decades, a virtuous cycle of low inflation, high investment and a higher level of sustainable growth.

Gordon Brown in his Budget speech

Universal child benefit . . . remains the fairest, the most efficient and the most cost-effective way of recognising the extra costs and responsibilities borne by all parents. It must be right in principle that, if child benefit is raised in future, then there is a case for higher-rate taxpayers paying tax on it.


In Cabinet, there are issues that get left undone unless I do them, not because I have to fight anybody but because they tend to fall off the agenda. When they do go on the agenda - like childcare - they're like pearls. Look how they glisten - and look how they turn up on the television news. They are issues that work for the Government; they've yet to work for me.

Harriet Harman, Social Security Secretary

It was hard on [my mother] because you want this conventional kind of happiness for your children, so it was difficult, but she's very supportive now.

Roberta Kray, nee Jones, on becoming married into a gangster world