Conference diary

Click to follow
Indy Politics

BOOKIES' FAVOURITE

If Gordon Brown's chances depended on literary sales he would have the keys to Downing Street in his pocket. The best-seller at the conference bookshop is a doorstep-sized collection of his previous speeches. Next is a reprint of Anthony Crosland's seminal work The Future of Socialism, complete with a foreword by the Chancellor. Bizarrely, some party members snapped up the latest collection of articles by Tory Boris Johnson.

BLAIR'S BLING

Adorning the front pages yesterday was Cherie Blair's wrist - and watch - wrapped around her husband's neck after his speech. The timepiece looked like the £2,340, diamond-encrusted Locman she often wears. Apparently, Silvio Berlusconi, the former Italian prime minister, often gives Locmans to his favourite chums.

POLITICAL FROTH

Jokes aplenty about champagne socialism among the revelling throngs on the party circuit, as they guzzled free fizz.

FROM RED TO BLUE

It must have been the first time a four-letter word won applause - and a grin from the PM. No Bob Geldof speech would be complete without an expletive or two, and delegates were delighted when the campaigner condemned the hunger faced by children in Africa, demanding to know: "What the fuck is going on?"

PIANO BAR

Mr Brown's former spin doctor Charlie Whelan seemed deeply unhappy yesterday. Apparently nothing to do with Blair's rapturous reception though. Angrily eyeing the scrum for the Midland Hotel's bar, he muttered: "They won't let us play the piano because it's 'against health and safety'."

OFF THE RAILS

The Aslef rail union delegation hit the train home after spending a frustrating fruitless five days trying to get a hold of their conference passes. A union source, furious at not getting near the conference, said that they would be billing the Labour high command for the wasted hotel costs.

GOOD DAY

The aw-shucking former US President Bill Clinton, who wowed the Labour faithful with his laidback Southern style, neatly echoing everything Tony Blair said the day before.

BAD DAY

The Transport Secretary Douglas Alexander had a packed hall just ahead of Big Bill. He failed to raise just a whisper of applause. David Miliband bombed too.

TODAY'S AGENDA

AM: Speeches by Peter Hain, Tessa Jowell, John Reid and Lord Falconer of Thoroton.

Speech by John Prescott closes conference.

Comments