Conference diary

Click to follow
Indy Politics

BEST-SELLING BORIS

There's no denying Boris Johnson's star quality among Tories. Andrew Gimson's biography of their flaxen-haired higher education spokesman is the runaway bestseller at the conference bookshop. The unlikely runner-up is Glass Houses, the raunchy first novel by Sandra Howard.

PASS CHAOS

The chaos over conference passes - the main talking point in Bournemouth's bars - becomes more bizarre. An up-and-coming Tory on the "'A-list" of approved candidates was mistakenly turned away on the grounds he had a criminal record. A journalist received a pass bearing the name of his former employer - because party staff were scrutinising paperwork a year out of date.

SEEKING POWER

Spooky timing at the Nuclear Industry Association fringe meeting. Just as Tim Yeo led a discussion on the security of Britain's power supply, all the lights went out.

UNFAMILIAR FACES

Two ex-Labour MPs have ventured into enemy territory. Lord Pendry, the former sports spokesman, is flying the flag for the Football Foundation and Helen Clark, defeated by the Tories in Peterborough last year, is representing the Multiple Sclerosis Society. Once mocked as a Blair babe, she is now well off message. She has confided in friends that the country might benefit from a spell of Tory rule.

UPHILL STRUGGLE

Bizarre scenes outside the conference where Michael Fabricant raced the train that takes less active Tories 300 yards uphill to the Highcliff Hotel. The perspiring Lichfield MP was the clear winner.

QUOTE OF THE DAY

"[Gordon Brown] talks about his moral compass. Well, we know about this Chancellor's compass - taxes are heading north, pensions are vanishing east and the new economy is going west." George Osborne, shadow Chancellor.

Comments