Nicola Sturgeon on Loose Women: How the 'most powerful woman in British politics' dealt with questions on shoes and fashion

The SNP leader knew it was eight minutes she would never get back

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As the pre-eminent spokesperson for the rock and roll generation, Don McLean might have wondered, as he strummed out the last chorus of Starry Starry Night, how he had come to be the support act for a nationalist politician from a microscopic nation getting cross examined by one of the Nolan sisters.

Still, he chose his music wisely. Nicola Sturgeon had been in the Loose Women hot seat for under a minute before she, like Vincent, was suffering for her sanity.

“The trouble is, when it comes to women,” host Ruth Langsford interrupted some interesting political discussion to point wistfully point out, “is that it all becomes about your look, your shoes, and your fashion.”

Which might have been a valid point, had it not been the device through which to entirely deliberately and entirely needlessly spend the remainder of the short eight minutes discussing the look, shoes and fashion of a woman who, not 90 seconds ago, had been introduced as “the most powerful woman in British politics.”

“I’m used to reading derogatory things about how I look, my hair, it’s water off a duck’s back,” Sturgeon continued. “But it worries me about younger women, thinking about going into politics, who might think, ‘I don’t fancy that.’”

Down the road, 56 new SNP MPs were arriving in Westminster (Getty)

This, naturally, was the cue to slap on to the big screen behind her head a short montage the least flattering pictures that had been generated by three genuinely historic decades in public life, and request a running commentary on each.

“The main thing that’s changed about me is that I’ve got older,” was the best she could come up with, knowing full well that down the road at Westminster, 56 Scottish Nationalist MPs were arriving, and this was eight precious minutes of her life she was never going to get back. “As you go grey you have to decide if you want to do something about it.”

She revealed she had once had training from no less than Sean Connery in “how to project my voice”, but volume doesn’t help a person raise the tenor of a discussion. “When I get home, it’s shoes off, make-up off, T-shirt on, and I slob around the house just like everybody else.” Fascinating.

It really didn’t need to be this way, but, as Don McLean had so mellifluously warned just moments before: ‘They would not listen / They’re not listening still / Perhaps they never will?’