Politics: Bruno Brookes, 37, joins Trendy Tories

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The Independent Online
THE FORMER Radio 1 DJ Bruno Brookes has become the latest "Trendy Tory" recruited by William Hague to revitalise the Conservative Party.

Brookes, who was culled by the BBC to make way for the new generation of DJs, has been chosen as a key member of Hague's Creative Forum, the think-tank charged with rebranding the party for the millennium.

The forum, which will advise on everything from the party logo to its "new millennial brand image", meets for the first time next week. Other members include the fashion designer Katharine Hamnett and James Bethell, the man behind London's Ministry of Sound nightclub.

Tony Blair has made great political capital out of attracting celebrity support for his "Cool Britannia" message, and the recruitment of so-called "Trendy Tories" is further evidence that Mr Hague is not prepared to cede that ground.

Brookes, 37, boasts of being a millionaire and runs a growing media company that syndicates his shows to local radio such as Aire FM. Colleagues at the Leeds-based station said the move came as no surprise since "everyone knows Bruno is a Trendy Tory".

Brookes himself was reticent yesterday after being "outed" as a Tory and redirected callers to Conservative Central Office.

Tories hope his combination of business sense and media savvy will pay dividends. But whether he will supply the fresh approach demanded by Central Office remains to be seen. Last year, Brookes appeared in a billboard advert for Aire FM that was banned by the Advertising Standards Authority as "offensive, sexist and gratuitous". The poster showed a cigar-toting Brookes framed by the stockinged legs of his wife, Debbie.

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