Pandora: John Prescott fails to lord it on the campaign trail

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The Independent Online

Last week Pandora speculated as to the proximity of a Prescott peerage. Having been both deputy Labour leader and deputy PM, the veteran bruiser would be more than qualified for a spot on Gordon Brown's disollution honours list, despite his previously-stated opposition to the principle.

Alas, it appears not everybody is as thrilled at the thought of witnessing Prezza in ermine robes as we are.

Over the weekend his elevation to the second chamber was the subject of vociferous protest amongst disgruntled members of his Hull constituency.

On Saturday, self-styled pro-Democracy group Power2010 could be seen (along with berobed mock-Prezza) canvassing support in the city's central Queen Victoria Square. Signatures were, we're told, collected, and a petition delivered to Prescott's constituency office.

The news will come as a blow to Prescott's wife, Pauline, who is said to have taken something of a shine to the name "Lady P" – though those close to Prescott, currently trundling the country in his general election "Battle Bus," claim that they've yet to give the idea a moment's thought.

Rascal's partying days may be over

n "I'm tired of partying, man," complains hip hop's young fogey Dizzee Rascal. "It's boring innit? The same people, the same chat. I like staying in. I'm that kind of guy."

Rascal recently relocated from his native east London to Kent's chintzy Chislehurst. It appears to be having an effect. "I'm not having any alcohol. No weed. I'm not doing anything – except some boxing to release energy." Pandora predicts an appearance, mid-morning jog, alongside Liam Gallagher soon.

Picture perfect candidate

A ringing endorsement, now, for Anna Span, Liberal Democrat candidate for Gravesham. Span, a former porn director (previous titles include Where's The Rent Boys? and the Cameron-esque Hug A Hoodie) and proprietor of the eponymous online sex shop, has ruffled more than a few feathers amongst the party's leather-elbowed faithful. But she's won over Dame Vivienne Westwood's son, Ben, who describes her as "a good girl". The pair have history: Span collaborated with the erotic photographer on her first ever film, Brief Encounter.

Waxing lyrical at premiere

A special mention, now, to Ruby Wax, who not only managed to outshine the entire cast and crew of David Baddiel's new comedy The Infidel at the film's London premiere last week, but also managed to engage in the evening's most entertaining small talk. "I know that David likes porn because we talked about it," the comedian could be heard chattering.

Wax has recently been recruited by the Home Office to improve the communication skills of employees. So, should she ever run into Jacqui Smith's husband, at least they'll have something to talk about.

McEwan loves a bit of celebrity gossip

"Publishing in the 1970s was still a rather dusty, gentlemanly affair," recalls Ian McEwan in the current edition of Waterstones Books Quarterly.

There was one other crucial difference, of course. "I don't think novelists in those days were the subject of gossip columns, either," reflects the Atonement author. "Everything has become a little louder, a little more vulgar, a little more trashy, a little more celebrity-conscious, sales-conscious. More fun in lots of ways." Happy to be of service, sir.