i wish they would ...

Debbie Barham suggests how the great and the good could make themselves even greater and better in 1998.

I will lose some of those excess pounds - Geoffrey Robinson

I will not leave the table before everyone else has finished - Gerry Adams

I will keep a diary every day

- Alan Clark

I will wear the same shirt for more than one week running

- Manchester United players

I will stop making such a song and dance out of trivial things

- Lord Lloyd-Webber

I will stop parking in disabled parking spaces - Harriet Harman

I will stop being horrible to the cat

- Cherie Booth

I will stop picking my nose (from mail-order catalogues)

- Michael Jackson

I will take up a sport of some kind

- Tottenham Hotspur football team

I will finally get around to putting those shelves up

- head builder, British Library restoration project

I will try to get out more

- anonymous INLA member, speaking from top security jail

I will try to get out less

- Mike Atherton

I will be more decisive. Perhaps

- Paddy Ashdown

I will learn to drive - Damon Hill

I will spend more time away from the TV - Richard and Judy

I will stop finishing other people's sentences

- Judge Hiller Zobel

I will buy at least one mind-expanding book - David Blunkett's commitment to 1998 education funding

I will behave more like an individual - memo: from Peter Mandelson, to: all Whitehall personnel, re: New Year's Resolutions (urgent)

I will stop treating people with sarcasm - yeah RIGHT - Jeremy Paxman

I will start acting my age

- Joan Collins, accepting a part in 'Return of the Living Dead'

I will give more time to the kids

- Jack Straw, on sentencing plans for young offenders

If I win the lottery I will not let it change my lifestyle

- Richard Branson

I will give more money to good causes - Chris Smith, Heritage Secretary

I will completely cut out red meat

- Jack Cunningham

I will try to make my demands clear - the Inland Revenue

I will stop talking on the job

- Chris Evans

I will have a good spring-clean

- ethnic-cleansing groups in Afghanistan

I will stop interfering with other people's business - Bill Gates

I will not shout at people

- The Rev Ian Paisley

I will conquer my fear of appearing in public - Channel Five

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