With the House of Commons sinking lower each day in the public's estimation, Martin Bell appears very much man of the moment. The former BBC journalist – who turned sleaze-busting MP in 1997 – has become the panel show guest du jour, clocking up appearances on Question Time, The One Show and Channel 4's The TV Show to name but a few.
Now we hear that the "man in the white suit" has got himself star billing at Clive Conway Celebrity Productions with a two-month long tour of summer speaking engagements.
Described as "An Audience With Martin Bell", the sessions are to be half prepared speech, half question- and-answer.
"Summer is usually quieter but the theatre booker has had lots of interest in Martin, and it sounds like there could be more dates announced for the autumn," explains a spokesman.
Intriguingly, Bell, who will be 71 by the time of the next election, recently refused to rule out the possibility of running for Parliament in Hazel Blears's Salford constituency. Could this be the unofficial start of his campaign? We wonder?
Ronnie rolls into a fashion line
A celebrity collaboration too far, perhaps? Following in the unlikely footsteps of Liam Gallagher, word reaches us that unkempt Rolling Stone Ronnie Wood has announced his intention to release a fashion line with none other than that renowned purveyor of paisley, Liberty of London. "Fusing rock 'n' roll and floral patterns," it will, says the PR bumf, be a "cauldron of mixed-media innovation". But what does that mean? We'll have to wait until autumn to find out.
Stressed? Elected? Help is at hand
*Losing sleep? Pandora certainly is, our heart heavy with concern for those MPs traumatised by their own expenses. Not to worry: help is at hand, courtesy of WPF Therapy, which has emailed all MPs with the offer of a stress assessment session. "Stress can affect your immune system, making you more vulnerable to illness, heart attack and stroke," explains the missive. "Speaking to WPF can help you release your tensions and problems in a private, soundproofed room." Surely Derek Draper has missed a trick here?
So, Piers – like what you see in the Mirror?
Quite frankly, Pandora could think of few better accompaniments to our cornflakes than the sight of Piers Morgan's semi-naked torso endorsing Burger King's latest money-spinner, "Flame" body spray ('the scent of seduction... with a hint of flame-grilled meat').
Staff at the Daily Mirror, though, appear to disagree. Indeed, they've chosen to place their ex-editor's advertising debut alongside another – dare we say even more enticing – offer: that of the Advanced Medical Institute, for advice on premature ejaculation.
Coincidence? Apparently not. Indeed, we're told to look out for a peace offering later in the week.
Building Britain's political websites
*Another day, another setback in the Government's efforts to conquer the world (wide web). Conservative-minded bloggers are delighting in this little gem, posted after Lord Mandelson presented his pompously named paper, "Building Britain's Future". Located at buildingbritainsfuture.co.uk, the spoof features several dazzling photos of the peer, accompanied by a mock statement ("Hi! I'm Peter...") Should any interested individual (no names mentioned) wish to take over the site, we're told that bids start at 88p.