Election '97: Laughter, tears, sleaze and spin:

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The Independent Online
View from the top, faces in the crowd: John Major on the 50th floor of Canary Wharf (left) and (right) the Tory party faithful listen to their leader at the Royal Albert Hall, early in the campaign Photographs: Tom Pilston

High drama, Whitehall farce: Neil and Christine Hamilton on the warpath (left). John Cleese stands tall for the Liberal Democrats (right) Photographs: Peter Macdiarmid/ Nicola Kurtz

Past: Baroness Thatcher (above left) campaigns in Aldershot, Hampshire

Photograph: Tom Pilston

Present: Michael Heseltine (below left) bullish in Castle Douglas, Scotland

Photograph: Drew Farrell

Future? A lonely poster (right) in a field in Great Stukeley, Huntingdonshire - just a few yards from John Major's constituency home

Arms and the man, pressing the flesh: Tony Blair embraces the electorate in Mitcham (left) and takes an opportunity to grab hold of the feel-good factor (right) Photographs: David Rose

Young hearts, tired bodies: A youthful Liberal Democrat (left). Paddy Ashdown's gruelling schedule catches up with him (right) Photographs: Kalpesh Lathigra/ John Voos

Dog days: A bulldog (left) is a spin-doctor's best friend

Photograph: Andrew Buurman

Flag days: A Liberal Democrat (above right) gets it in the neck at a party rally on the last day of campaigning

Photograph: John Voos

Heady days: Labour was able to count on hundreds of Asian voters when Tony Blair arrived in Leicester

Photograph: David Rose

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