Andy McSmith's Diary: The day that Piers Morgan revealed all to Charlotte Church

 

As Piers Morgan contemplates his next move, there hangs over him the issue of phone hacking, and how much he knew while he was editor of the Daily Mirror from 1995 to 2004. Lord Justice Leveson, it will be recalled, found his protestations of complete ignorance “utterly unpersuasive”. Without suggesting that there was evidence that Morgan had ever sanctioned phone hacking, the judge concluded that “he was aware that it was taking place in the press as a whole and… was prepared to joke about it.”

For what it is worth, the judge’s conclusions have support from Charlotte Church, who is now 27 and wiser than she was when, as a teenage star, she first met Morgan, though no less prone to using strong language. “I remember interviewing Piers Morgan when I was 17, for the Oxford Union, and he was such a prick,” she told Stylist magazine. “His argument basically centred around, ‘You’re rich, you’re making money out of this – who the f*** are you to question it?’ I was like, ‘I hate you!’ I wanted to storm out, and it took all my strength not to – and in that talk he basically told me about phone hacking and everything.”

They’ve got Mogg’s number

Respect to Channel 4 news for transporting Jacob Rees-Mogg, a Tory MP who doesn’t even pretend to be anything but a southern Tory toff, to South Shields to see what they would make of him up there. One exchange in the street with a woman pushing a buggy went as follows; She: “I like Labour.” The Mogg: “You like Labour? Why do you like Labour?” In one short sentence, she set out her opinion of David Cameron, by coincidence using the very term that Charlotte Church used to describe Piers Morgan.

Later, the Mogg was set up to call the numbers in a bingo hall, and called out 89, adding that it was one more than the number commonly known as ‘two fat ladies’. When a voice in the audience cried: “You can’t say that any more,” the Mogg disarmingly replied: “Oh, but there are only thin ladies in here so I didn’t think anyone would mind.”

A night to remember

The Politics Home website reports that an unnamed Labour MP’s office keeps receiving misdirected emails from Lib Dem high command, because the MP’s researcher has a name “strikingly similar” to that of a Lib Dem peer. The Labour staffer is said to have been taken aback to receive a mysterious missive from Lord (Paddy) Ashdown, declaring: “That was great last night. Thanks for how much you put into it.”

Horror scope

You have to feel sorry for the couple from Romford, Essex, after rays from the sun refracted through a crystal ball they had left on their window sill and set their curtains on fire. But they should have foreseen it.

A fate worse than sprouts

Lord Pearson, a Ukip peer, has suggested that the Government should mark the 25th anniversary of the collapse of the Soviet Union in 2016 by honouring Vladimir Bukovsky, a 71- year-old Russian now living in Cambridge. He was the first to expose the misuse of psychiatry to silence dissent.

For that and other displays of stubborn courage, he spent 13 years in and out of prison or mental hospitals before being deported. On his arrival in the West in 1976, he tried to describe some particularly disgusting vegetable that was served to prisoners. Someone suggested that he meant Brussels sprouts.

“No,” exclaimed Bukovsky, “they’re delicious!” Try to imagine a vegetable compared with which Brussels sprouts are “delicious”, and you have a small insight into what Bukovsky went through in defence of free speech.

PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
ebooksNow available in paperback
News
Happy in his hat: Pharrell Williams
people
Arts and Entertainment
Stella Gibson is getting closer to catching her killer
tvReview: It's gripping edge-of-the-seat drama, so a curveball can be forgiven at such a late stage
News
Brazilian football legend Pele pictured in 2011
peopleFans had feared the worst when it was announced the Brazil legand was in a 'special care' unit
News
i100(More than you think)
Sport
Brendan Rodgers seems more stressed than ever before as Liverpool manager
FOOTBALLI like Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
News
Phyllis Dorothy James on stage during a reading of her book 'Death Comes to Pemberley' last year
peopleJohn Walsh pays tribute to PD James, who died today
Life and Style
Dishing it out: the head chef in ‘Ratatouille’
food + drinkShould UK restaurants follow suit?
News
peopleExclusive: Maryum and Hana Ali share their stories of the family man behind the boxing gloves
Arts and Entertainment
John Hurt will voice Prince Bolkonsky in Radio 4's War and Peace
radioRadio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Extras
indybest
News
i100
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Austen Lloyd: Commercial / Residential Property - Surrey

Excellent Salary: Austen Lloyd: SURREY MARKET TOWN - SENIOR PROPERTY SOLICITOR...

Recruitment Genius: Graduate Programme - Online Location Services Business

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: What do you want to do with your career? Do yo...

Recruitment Genius: Senior QC Scientist

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: This company is a leading expert in immunoassa...

Recruitment Genius: Development Scientist

Negotiable: Recruitment Genius: A Development Scientist is required to join a ...

Day In a Page

Homeless Veterans Christmas Appeal: ‘We give them hope. They come to us when no one else can help’

Christmas Appeal

Meet the charity giving homeless veterans hope – and who they turn to when no one else can help
Should doctors and patients learn to plan humane, happier endings rather than trying to prolong life?

Is it always right to try to prolong life?

Most of us would prefer to die in our own beds, with our families beside us. But, as a GP, Margaret McCartney sees too many end their days in a medicalised battle
Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night - is that what it takes for women to get to the top?

What does it take for women to get to the top?

Thomas Cook's outgoing boss Harriet Green got by on four hours sleep a night and told women they had to do more if they wanted to get on
Christmas jumper craze: Inside the UK factory behind this year's multicultural must-have

Knitting pretty: British Christmas Jumpers

Simmy Richman visits Jack Masters, the company behind this year's multicultural must-have
French chefs have launched a campaign to end violence in kitchens - should British restaurants follow suit?

French chefs campaign against bullying

A group of top chefs signed a manifesto against violence in kitchens following the sacking of a chef at a Paris restaurant for scalding his kitchen assistant with a white-hot spoon
Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour War and Peace on New Year's Day as Controller warns of cuts

Just what you need on a New Year hangover...

Radio 4 to broadcast 10-hour adaptation of War and Peace on first day of 2015
Cuba set to stage its first US musical in 50 years

Cuba to stage first US musical in 50 years

Claire Allfree finds out if the new production of Rent will hit the right note in Havana
Christmas 2014: 10 best educational toys

Learn and play: 10 best educational toys

Of course you want them to have fun, but even better if they can learn at the same time
Paul Scholes column: I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season

Paul Scholes column

I like Brendan Rodgers as a manager but Liverpool seem to be going backwards not forwards this season
Lewis Moody column: Stuart Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

Lewis Moody: Lancaster has made all the right calls – now England must deliver

So what must the red-rose do differently? They have to take the points on offer 
Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

Cameron, Miliband and Clegg join forces for Homeless Veterans campaign

It's in all our interests to look after servicemen and women who fall on hard times, say party leaders
Millionaire Sol Campbell wades into wealthy backlash against Labour's mansion tax

Sol Campbell cries foul at Labour's mansion tax

The former England defender joins Myleene Klass, Griff Rhys Jones and Melvyn Bragg in criticising proposals
Nicolas Sarkozy returns: The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?

Sarkozy returns

The ex-President is preparing to fight for the leadership of France's main opposition party – but will he win big enough?
Is the criticism of Ed Miliband a coded form of anti-Semitism?

Is the criticism of Miliband anti-Semitic?

Attacks on the Labour leader have coalesced around a sense that he is different, weird, a man apart. But is the criticism more sinister?
Ouija boards are the must-have gift this Christmas, fuelled by a schlock horror film

Ouija boards are the must-have festive gift

Simon Usborne explores the appeal - and mysteries - of a century-old parlour game