Conference Diary: Nick Clegg stamp; Beeb's £400 taxi fare; A tale of two Eds; Leader's sell-out mugs


Nick Clegg puts his stamp on the proceedings

It is probably not the right stamp to use if you are writing to a first year university student, but in Brighton you can buy a sheet of stamps with Nick Clegg's picture on them. In the conference hall, there is a stall where people are invited to get themselves pictured as a stunt to raise money for charity. Nick Clegg was doing the ceremonial leader's walk around of the conference stalls and was whisked into the booth to be photographed. The stamps cost £1 each.

£400 taxi fare that's at odds with BBC cost-cutting

The BBC has saved vast sums of money by cutting the number of personnel it is sending to the party conferences this year. Basically, it is political correspondents, camera crews, back-up staff, and that's it.

Andrew Neil, for example, is hosting his Daily Politics show from London. But about £400 that might have been saved was lost through a decision to invite the former Liberal Democrat MP, Evan Harris, to be interviewed in the studio, instead of doing it down the line. He was provided with a taxi to take him from Brighton to London and back.

A tale of two Eds and some unreturned history notes

Ed Davey, the Energy Secretary, had a revealing chat at a conference fringe meeting yesterday with Channel 4's Political Editor Gary "Funky" Gibbon, in which he talked about being orphaned as a teenager. He lost his father, a solicitor, when he was just four. His mother died of bone cancer when he was 15. On a lighter note, he also described his days at Nottingham High School, where he was a year ahead of Ed Balls. The young Balls borrowed his history notes, he claimed – and still has not given them back.

Better late than never for leader's sell-out mugs

A forlorn notice on the Liberal Democrat Image bookstall tells delegates hoping to buy the special Nick Clegg "There's no easy way to say this – I'm sorry" mug that there will be more stocks in "on Friday". The conference ends tomorrow.

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