Pandora logo

Kilroy starts civil war in yet another right-wing party

Robert Kilroy-Silk's attempt to set up his own political party isn't just upsetting former chums at the UK Independence Party, it also looks like being a nail in the coffin of the New Party for Britain.

Robert Kilroy-Silk's attempt to set up his own political party isn't just upsetting former chums at the UK Independence Party, it also looks like being a nail in the coffin of the New Party for Britain.

As this column first revealed, the MEP and former chat-show host intends to contest the general election on behalf of Veritas, a new party of which he is both leader and founder member.

First though, he must secure financial support. With that in mind, Kilroy recently held secret meetings with the so-called New Party, which is bankrolled by the Scottish tycoon Robert Durward.

Launched in a blaze of publicity a couple of years back, the right-leaning New Party has since struggled. Kilroy, I'm told, offered to join its ranks so long as he could immediately become leader.

This was discussed by the party's executive committee. But after a lengthy debate, it was rejected by 5 votes to 4. As a result, several Kilroy supporters - including the policy director Jonathan Lockhart - have resigned, and are now working for Veritas.

Official spokesmen won't discuss the row, but insiders say that Kilroy and Lockhart were involved in a "clash of egos" with Durward.

Meanwhile, with Kilroy reluctant to dig into his own pockets, Veritas - unkindly nicknamed "Vanitas" - continues its search for a backer.

* THE ACTOR Juliet Stevenson has further evidence of Dame Stella Rimington's transformation from spymaster to 21st-century media celebrity.

The former MI5 boss has been helping Stevenson with her next film, in which she plays a female spy dealing with a terrorist attack. It's called Red Mercury Rising , and is about the siege of a London restaurant," said Stevenson, at the launch of the Bird's Eye View Film Festival.

"We don't demonise the terrorists, but present them as lost souls. I play a Stella Rimington-type character, so we met over lunch to discuss the role. I can tell you she is not as forbidding as you might expect."

If nothing else, the film, which co-stars Peter Postlethwaite, has been painstakingly researched.

"We also spoke to an ex-member of the Metropolitan Police, Roy Ram, who drew up strategy after the siege of the Iranian Embassy," says its producer, Peter Ansorge.

* SIR PETER HALL'S entry in Who's Who - already a whopping nine column inches - is making progress towards being the longest in recent times.

Displaying the energy of a man half his age, the 74-year-old director spent last week flip-flopping the Atlantic, overseeing the opening of three shows - two in London and one in Boston.

"The only bind about all of this is jetlag," he reports, from the set of his new West End show, Whose Life is it Anyway? "But as soon as this is finished, I'm off to LA for the opening of As You Like It. I'm also doing a play with Nick Lyndhurst, and later this year an opera at Glyndebourne, three plays at Bath, and another opera, in Chicago."

Retirement, he adds, is out of the question "unless others force it upon me".

* GORDON BROWN'S recent tour of Africa has upset allies of the Prime Minister, who consider Nelson Mandela - with whom the Chancellor was photographed - to be a Friend of Tony.

Now, with relentless predictability, comes their riposte. "Gordon's desperate to look like a world statesman, but it's a total PR exercise," says one. "Before Make Poverty History became trendy, he'd barely set foot on the continent."

Indeed. Brown's office rather sheepishly says that he's made just one other trip to Africa since taking office. That was back in 1998, when he spent a day in Soweto, en route to a Commonwealth meeting.

* Doon Mackichan, the elegant linchpin of Smack the Pony, has suffered a setback in her bid to launch a film career.

"I've just spent ages writing a script about three women who swim the English Channel," Mackichan tells me. "But I think someone stole my idea: I've discovered that another film's being released, about a bloke from a council estate swimming the Channel."

"I wanted mine to be first, so I am going to turn up at the premiere in a bathing suit covered in lard and accost the director, screaming: "I was first!'"

That's a bold gesture: Mackichan quietly adds that both she and her co-star Fiona Allen recently gave birth.

pandora@independent.co.uk www.independent.co.uk/pandora

PROMOTED VIDEO
News
ebooksAn unforgettable anthology of contemporary reportage
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

Finance Manager - Recruitment Business (Media & Entertainment)

£28000 - £35000 per annum + negotiable: Sauce Recruitment: We have an exciting...

HR Advisor - North London / North West London

£30000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Advisor - North London...

Finance Manager - Recruitment Business (Media & Entertainment)

£28000 - £32000 per annum + negotiable: Sauce Recruitment: We have an exciting...

HR Advisor - North London / North West London

£30000 - £35000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: HR Advisor - North London...

Day In a Page

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?

A crime that reveals London's dark heart

How could three tourists have been battered within an inch of their lives by a burglar in a plush London hotel?
Meet 'Porridge' and 'Vampire': Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker

Lost in translation: Western monikers

Chinese state TV is offering advice for citizens picking a Western moniker. Simon Usborne, who met a 'Porridge' and a 'Vampire' while in China, can see the problem
Handy hacks that make life easier: New book reveals how to rid your inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone

Handy hacks that make life easier

New book reveals how to rid your email inbox of spam, protect your passwords and amplify your iPhone with a loo-roll
KidZania lets children try their hands at being a firefighter, doctor or factory worker for the day

KidZania: It's a small world

The new 'educational entertainment experience' in London's Shepherd's Bush will allow children to try out the jobs that are usually undertaken by adults, including firefighter, doctor or factory worker
Renée Zellweger's real crime has been to age in an industry that prizes women's youth over humanity

'Renée Zellweger's real crime was to age'

The actress's altered appearance raised eyebrows at Elle's Women in Hollywood awards on Monday
From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

Disney plans live-action remakes of animated classics

From Cinderella to The Jungle Book, Patrick Grafton-Green wonders if they can ever recapture the old magic
Thousands of teenagers to visit battlefields of the First World War in new Government scheme

Pupils to visit First World War battlefields

A new Government scheme aims to bring the the horrors of the conflict to life over the next five years
The 10 best smartphone accessories

Make the most of your mobile: 10 best smartphone accessories

Try these add-ons for everything from secret charging to making sure you never lose your keys again
Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time against Real Madrid: Was this shirt swapping the real reason?

Liverpool v Real Madrid

Mario Balotelli substituted at half-time. Was shirt swapping the real reason?
West Indies tour of India: Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Hurricane set to sweep Windies into the shadows

Decision to pull out of India tour leaves the WICB fighting for its existence with an off-field storm building
Indiana serial killer? Man arrested for murdering teenage prostitute confesses to six other murders - and police fear there could be many more

A new American serial killer?

Police fear man arrested for murder of teen prostitute could be responsible for killing spree dating back 20 years
Sweetie, the fake 10-year-old girl designed to catch online predators, claims her first scalp

Sting to trap paedophiles may not carry weight in UK courts

Computer image of ‘Sweetie’ represented entrapment, experts say
Fukushima nuclear crisis: Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on - and may never return home

Return to Fukushima – a land they will never call home again

Evacuees still stuck in cramped emergency housing three years on from nuclear disaster
Wildlife Photographer of the Year: Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize

Wildlife Photographer of the Year

Intimate image of resting lions claims top prize
Online petitions: Sign here to change the world

Want to change the world? Just sign here

The proliferation of online petitions allows us to register our protests at the touch of a button. But do they change anything?