The sight of an outspoken Tory MP apparently being silenced by Downing Street became one of the enduring images of last month's Conservative conference. Andrew Tyrie was caught on film by the BBC seemingly called to one side by Steve Hilton, one of David Cameron's most senior advisers, before he could give an interview.
Days before, Mr Tyrie, the chairman of the Treasury Select Committee, had criticised the Government's growth strategy. The MP was said to have recanted his views after his encounter with Mr Hilton, prompting claims that he had been leant on. But last night the BBC said it had got the story wrong, apologising to Mr Tyrie for using footage that gave a "misleading impression". It said the MP had told its journalists that his opinions on growth had changed before talking with Mr Hilton. A spokesman said: "Last month we broadcast some reports from the Conservative Party conference which fell below our usual standards." The MP said: "They have accepted that they made a mistake – we all make them – and apologised. As far as I'm concerned that is an end of [it]."