Diary: I'm a celebrity, get me out of here!

History shows that our celebrities and politicians traditionally make ill-suited bedfellows. Indeed, as Tony Blair would be quick to point out, those pesky thespians – more than happy to knock back your Downing Street bubbly when it flamin' well suits them – can be a fickle lot when the going gets tough!

So I don't doubt Nick Clegg lit that trusty Marlboro with a weighty sigh last night, following news his old mate Colin Firth has jumped ship from the Lib Dems, apparently muttering about "U-turns" and such like. While Nick will no doubt inform our very own Mr Darcy it's time to "get real", as we went to press the state of the Lib Dems' once ample showbiz ranks was unclear. Among those up until recently listed alongside Firth as "supporters" were Brian Eno, Chris Martin, Andrew Motion and High Street Ken's admirable excuse for a Wednesday picture story, Kate Winslet. Ominous rumblings that all of the above are suddenly "unavailable" for this year's Christmas karaoke at Lib Dem HQ remain unconfirmed.

* As Damian Green's Coalition colleagues in the Liberal Democrats would be quick to point out, bold political pledges can prove troublesome old things if you're not careful.

Back in 2009, the then Tory shadow Immigration minister vowed to dress up as Father Christmas if children remained in the Yarl's Wood detention centre in Bedfordshire come the end of this year. By July 2010, Green was beginning to show signs of concern, admitting that such a promise had been "possibly rash".

The prospects of an unwelcome festive photo call in the coming days is looking increasingly on the cards, following reports the spring is now a more likely timescale, due to ongoing delays.

A courteous call to the Home Office hoping to clarify just when High Street Ken could pop down to see Santa was met with a defensive response yesterday.

"We are due to make an announcement before Christmas," a spokeswoman patiently explained. "Obviously we can't pre-empt things by saying whether or not he'll be doing that."

* When Ringo Starr announced in his angriest LA-Scouse accent from across the Atlantic that he would no longer be signing autographs for fans, some feared the man once regarded as the most lovable Beatle had left his famed sense of humour in a Californian therapist's office. So I'm relieved to note that the old boy now appears full of some welcome Christmas spirit – I hasten to add I mean this in the moral sense, Mr Starr hasn't touched a drop in years.

Apparently having mellowed since that unfortunate outburst, Ringo has just announced the winner of his very own photography contest, after inviting fans to submit their best efforts showing him on his US tour.

Starr has now gone back on his previous pledge and even sent the lucky victor a pair of personally signed and dated drumsticks; eBay watch out.

* Having seen his own recent Lembit Opik sitcom proposal hastily shot down by some frankly unimaginative commissioning executives – (like I said on the phone, your loss!) – perhaps High Street Ken isn't quite as qualified as he previously imagined when it comes to handing out advice to the comedy industry's more celebrated figures.

Still, following news that Steve Coogan is suing the News of the World over phone-hacking claims, I can't help seeing exciting possibilities. After all, what with Mr Coogan having only recently played an "exaggerated" troubled version of himself in BBC2's The Trip, surely his pursuit of justice at the hands of his alleged tabloid aggressors would make a cracking second series? Stay with me.

Might I suggest his amiable co-star Rob Brydon be brought back to offer "the necessary light alongside Steve's dark", while cameos from troublesome old squeeze Courtney Love and a few ironic lap-dancers would surely lead to the comic having another critical hit on his hands? If it's a no, Steve, Lembit already assures me he's interested.

highstreetken@independent.co.uk

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs People

HR Manager - London - £40,000 + bonus

£32000 - £40000 per annum + bonus: Ashdown Group: HR Manager (Generalist) -Old...

Talent Manager / HR Manager - central London - £50,000

£45000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Talent / Learning & Development Mana...

HR Manager (standalone) - London

Up to £40,000: Ashdown Group: Standalone HR Manager role for an SME business b...

HR Analyst - Banking - Bristol - £350-£400

£350 - £400 per day: Orgtel: HR Analyst - Banking - Bristol - £350 - £400 per ...

Day In a Page

Alexander Fury: The designer names to look for at fashion week this season

The big names to look for this fashion week

This week, designers begin to show their spring 2015 collections in New York
Will Self: 'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

'I like Orwell's writing as much as the next talented mediocrity'

Will Self takes aim at Orwell's rules for writing plain English
Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Meet Afghanistan's middle-class paint-ballers

Toy guns proving a popular diversion in a country flooded with the real thing
Al Pacino wows Venice

Al Pacino wows Venice

Ham among the brilliance as actor premieres two films at festival
Neil Lawson Baker interview: ‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.

Neil Lawson Baker interview

‘I’ve gained so much from art. It’s only right to give something back’.
The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

The other Mugabe who is lining up for the Zimbabwean presidency

Wife of President Robert Mugabe appears to have her sights set on succeeding her husband
The model of a gadget launch: Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed

The model for a gadget launch

Cultivate an atmosphere of mystery and excitement to sell stuff people didn't realise they needed
Alice Roberts: She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

She's done pretty well, for a boffin without a beard

Alice Roberts talks about her new book on evolution - and why her early TV work drew flak from (mostly male) colleagues
Get well soon, Joan Rivers - an inspiration, whether she likes it or not

Get well soon, Joan Rivers

She is awful. But she's also wonderful, not in spite of but because of the fact she's forever saying appalling things, argues Ellen E Jones
Doctor Who Into the Dalek review: A classic sci-fi adventure with all the spectacle of a blockbuster

A fresh take on an old foe

Doctor Who Into the Dalek more than compensated for last week's nonsensical offering
Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

Fashion walks away from the celebrity runway show

As the collections start, fashion editor Alexander Fury finds video and the internet are proving more attractive
Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy

Meet the stars of TV's Wolf Hall...

... and it's not the cast of the Tudor trilogy
Weekend at the Asylum: Europe's biggest steampunk convention heads to Lincoln

Europe's biggest steampunk convention

Jake Wallis Simons discovers how Victorian ray guns and the martial art of biscuit dunking are precisely what the 21st century needs
Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Don't swallow the tripe – a user's guide to weasel words

Lying is dangerous and unnecessary. A new book explains the strategies needed to avoid it. John Rentoul on the art of 'uncommunication'
Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough? Was the beloved thespian the last of the cross-generation stars?

Daddy, who was Richard Attenborough?

The atomisation of culture means that few of those we regard as stars are universally loved any more, says DJ Taylor