Pandora's Quotes of the year

Boxing Day gives us time to reflect on 2005, a year in which Pandora served up a daily despatch from the front line of current affairs. So, in a spirit of seasonal self-congratulation, we give you our past 12 months in the words of the people who made them
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Our Betters:

"There is abundant evidence that Blair is a liar, but on this occasion he is completely in the clear, and can be exonerated." - Peter Oborne discovers the Prime Minister never did lie about watching Newcastle United as a child.

"There is nothing that you could say to me now that I could ever believe." What Gordon Brown told Tony Blair, as tape-recorded by his biographer Richard Peston.

"I'm shocked the Labour Party finds it remotely clever or amusing to impose the faces of probably the two highest-profile Jewish politicians onto the bodies of pigs. I urge them to apologise for this tasteless poster immediately." Andrew Mennear, Tory candidate for Golders Green, helps Pandora break the "flying pigs" story.

"This is a ridiculous so-called joke. There's nothing I intend to do about it, except kick Taki on the shins next time I see him." Nicholas Soames, responds to Taki's allegation in 'The Spectator', that he offered Osama bin Laden membership of White's.

"It's Alan from JP's office here. I'm just calling to state categorically that the Deputy Prime Minister doesn't wear a wig." John Prescott's spokesman explains that his hair is all his own.

Fighting talk:

"I don't watch any stand-up. I especially can't stand Billy Connolly. He's awful; imagine laughing at your own jokes all the time." That's Julian Clary off the Big Yin's Christmas card list.

"Spicer and Young were just sarcastic and obnoxious. I've now banned them from my restaurants." Jean-Christophe Novelli is upset by the behaviour of food critics Kate Spicer and Toby Young on 'Hell's Kitchen'.

"Perhaps he's just stroppy because Toby and I won't sleep with him." Kate Spicer hits back.

"I'm looking forward to hearing what chants the Barmy Army will come up with." Shane Warne reveals he's become an "ambassador" for the Advanced Hair Studio, a baldness clinic.

"There is no truth in it. As to what I might do, I will need time to seek advice and find out more information." Michael Fish responds to accusations in the memoirs of the journalist David Benedictus of "being part of a wife-swapping circle in east Twickenham."

"If you think that interview was bad, you should wait for my memoirs; I saw things that went on in that kitchen that you wouldn't believe." Gordon Ramsay is writing his memoirs, and it could make ugly reading for Marco Pierre White.

Men of Letters:

"I am mortified and upset by my behaviour last night. I can only claim to have drunk too much wine and lost any sense of politeness or fair play. Don't take my criticisms to heart. They were just drunken outbursts for which I am profoundly sorry." Peter Ackroyd apologises for starting a brawl at the first night of the play 'Spread'.

"Christopher started this row, and if he wants to finish it, then fine. There haven't been nauseating scenes of reconciliation, but the war is officially over." Peter Hitchens makes friends again with his brother, Christopher.

"This is an outrage and they shouldn't be calling it Bleak House. We have a meeting on Saturday and I shall be asking all those in attendance whether they would support a protest in costume outside the BBC." A spokesman for the Dickens Fellowship responds to the broadcaster's adaptation of her favourite book.

"Everyone expected that Hugo would be asked to write the official biography. He wasn't, so he wrote this one with all his sources and contacts instead. As for what William Shawcross intends to write now, you'll have to ask him." Hugo Vickers's publisher takes a shot at the Queen Mother's official biographer.

Media Players:

"Greg needs therapy. All he talks about any more is the Hutton inquiry and how much he hates Tony Blair. Maybe I should stick him in the Big Brother house." Peter Bazalgette reckons Greg Dyke's losing his edge.

"I never realised I had such a big fan base. I could spend the £27 on food for my children, who are in danger of starving, but I won £55 on the Grand National so I'll probably stick it on a horse." Rosie Millard, who found herself with £40,000 worth of credit card debts, thanks the listeners of BBC Radio Leeds for helping her out.

"I'm quite disappointed, as I was looking forward to my day in court." Two months before the City Slickers trial starts, Piers Morgan responds to news that he won't be called to give evidence.

"I was actually trying to sort out a piece of vandalism that had already taken place; somebody else had fiddled with the name badge and we were trying to fix it." Mark Bolland denies rumours that he and his partner Guy Black defaced a portrait of the 'Daily Mail' editor Paul Dacre at the National Portrait Gallery.

"Gosh! I wish I'd got this earlier. The bloke is quite clearly insane. If any of this came out he'd be toast." Jeremy Paxman discovers BBC Director General Mark Thompson once bit a newsroom colleague.

Something I said?

"This is all incredibly homophobic." Why Sir Elton John's spokesman won't tell me if David Furnish is to adopt a title after their wedding.

"Is this The Independent newspaper. And you're a newspaper? Oh, OK, so do you guys print fact or fiction?" David Schwimmer telephones to object to Pandora's reporting of his co-star Catherine Tate's column in the 'New Statesman'.

"Are you asking me if I was shit? I think you are. You reckon I was probably shit at driving. I find that sort of thing offensive. I didn't go on that show for people to tell me I'm bad at driving." Timothy Spall responds to a polite query on his 'Top Gear' appearance.

"I remember you; you're the man who came up to me at the Mary Poppins premiere and asked if I thought Kate Beckinsale's had breast implants. I am not talking to you again." Why Bill Nighy is on no speakers.

Beautiful people

"It was a huge disappointment to Mr Gay UK, to our crowd, and to several dozen camp dancers, who were due to appear on stage with him." Pete Doherty upsets organisers of the Big Gay Out, by failing to perform at their event.

"The West End stinks. Putting on theatre at the Donmar or National is one thing, but being out here is a joke. You end up dealing with some of the most crooked people I've ever met. Would I write another play? The short answer is no." Nick Moran on the state of British theatre.

"I was in the junior national squad for a while, but I just didn't have the killer instinct you need to get right to the top. I always caught myself thinking: 'Someone's got to lose and it would be such a shame if it had to be the other guy'." Ex-squash champ Martin Freedman reveals his hidden talent.

"If Lulu says I gave her one, and she says I was great, then that's fine by me." Former Take That star Jason Orange confronts the rumours.

"I just don't need the headache any more." Celebrity agent Ghislain Pascal parts with his best-known client, the supermodel Caprice.

"He lives in Hawaii, in a solar powered commune where they grow their own food. He likes to practise his beliefs and doesn't like smoky environments, so we've had to be mindful of that." Woody Harrelson's spokesman on why he's backing Britain's smoking ban.

"The idea of bludgeoning people and telling them if they smoke they're awful is ludicrous." Johnny Depp on why he isn't.

"Angelina Jolie is a woman with an affliction. She was on a plane with me and she looked like a pelican; we sat there and threw fish." Joan Rivers doesn't much like Hollywood's younger celebrities.