Restricting the right to strike in

monopoly public services

Anti-fraud Bill to allow cross-checking of tax, VAT and benefit records

Get 100,000 lone parents off welfare into work

Bill to save the taxpayer pounds 40m in

compensation for accidents at work


"I sleep like a baby; I wake up every four hours and burst into tears." Ian Lang, President of the Board of Trade

"Get your bottle of gin for the conference." Stallholder at the Marginal Seats Tombola (Guess how many?)

"We Conservatives do actually find it hard to talk about caring." Paul Gray, Preston

"Harriet Harman ... she only scraped on to Labour's National Executive thanks to their assisted places scheme for less able women." Peter Lilley

"Clare Short ... She paid the price for being indiscreet on sofas at weekends and on television." Sir George Young

"We [Conservatives] were not set up to think. We were not set up to write. We were set up to govern." Michael Portillo, fringe meeting

"This is a speech which will get no coverage in the press or on television news ... Because it is full of good news." John Gummer


John Major

broke new

conference ground with an hour confidently

fielding questions

John Gummer

obliged to deliver the most arousal-free speech of the day. Not even a token


The press - knocked even more than usual for failing to trumpet Britain's achievement and, for its cynicism


Norman Lamont, more Europhobia 500 people.

Michael Portillo, Conservative Way Forward, 220 people but many disappointed by the Defence Secretary's caution and loyalty.

Sir Teddy Taylor versus Quentin Davies, on the single currency, 200.

Gillian Shephard on tightening discipline in schools, 100 plus


John Major and Brian Mawhinney self-consciously removing their jackets during the Q&A session


ITN, drinks at the Highcliff,

British Airways, champagne at the Royal Bath, Irish Embassy 'stout party' in the conference


Connex Rail Ltd, champagne and croissants at the Highcliff


Malcolm Rifkind 3 min 5 sec

Foreign Secretary 88 decibels

Ian Lang 1 min 15 sec

Industry 90 decibels

John Major 42 sec

(question time) 98 decibels

John Gummer 22 sec

Environment 86 decibels

Sir George Young 20 sec

Transport 86 decibels

National Heritage (Virginia Bottomley), Defence (Michael Portillo), Economy (Kenneth Clarke), Education and Employment (Gillian Shephard), address by Michael Heseltine, deputy prime minister.


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