Straw orders inquiry over security blunder on Blairs' home

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JACK STRAW, the Home Secretary, yesterday ordered an immediate inquiry after sensitive documents about Tony Blair's constituency home were made available to the public in an apparent security blunder.

Complete files on plans to protect the Blairs' Victorian home in Trimdon, County Durham, have reportedly been available at the public records office at Sedgefield District Council.

The Sunday Times said yesterday it had seen a planning application detailing proposed security arrangements at the Blairs' home, made within days of Labour's general election victory last May. For pounds 11.75, a reporter was able to view this security "blueprint" at the records office and was even allowed to draw sketches. The application revealed a secret route so the Blairs could escape a terrorist attack and the location of almost a dozen infra-red cameras and motion sensors to detect intruders in the garden. Yesterday a Home Office spokesman said Mr Straw had asked for the material to be withdrawn.

John Stalker, former deputy chief constable of Greater Manchester Police and an expert on terrorism, said detailed security arrangements on the Blair family home would be "absolutely priceless" to a terrorist cell.