Chris Bryant

Up to 500 immigrants may have slipped passport net

As many as 500 "undesirable" European nationals may have been allowed into Britain as a result of a government pilot scheme to reduce passport checks at Britain's airports over the summer, Labour claimed yesterday.

Diary: One more resignation to go, Gary

This column's sympathy goes out to the many unfortunate journalists losing their jobs at the News of the World – but particularly Gary Lineker. For while many hacks are justifiably upset by events, Lineker will be deprived not only of his column, but also of the chance to submit another principled letter of resignation. The ex-footballer relinquished his role with the Mail on Sunday when its Lord Triesman sting put England's 2018 World Cup bid in jeopardy. "The actions of the Mail on Sunday... have undermined the bid to bring the World Cup to England," he said at the time. And he was said to have been considering his role at NotW before yesterday's announcement, fearing that his reputation might be tarnished by association with the paper. (I am, of course, still awaiting Lineker's principled resignation from his estimated £1.5m-a-year job at Match of the Day, after the BBC broadcast Panorama's FIFA investigation in November: a programme widely credited with, er, undermining the bid to bring the World Cup to England. Ho hum.)

Diary: Morrissey disgruntled again

As this column reported a mere fortnight ago, the terminally disgruntled Morrissey (né Smith) rained on the royal wedding parade, telling Radio 4's Front Row that the Windsors were "benefit scroungers and nothing else. I don't believe they serve any purpose whatsoever". The glum one has since released a rare statement via his website accusing the BBC of "Iranian censorship" for having "chopped and cropped" the interview, and thus "confiscated" his opinions. Morrissey, it seems, was especially irate that the media all but ignored the death of punk musician Poly Styrene in favour of "blubbering praise" for Kate Middleton. Warming to his Middle Eastern theme, he controversially went on: "The message is clear: What you achieve in life means nothing compared to what you are born into. Is this Syria?? [sic]"

More headlines

Downing Street backs Prince Andrew in trade role

Downing Street today offered robust support to the Duke of York amid calls for him to resign as UK trade envoy over his relationships with a series of controversial figures, including a convicted paedophile.

Coulson 'has thrown his former staff to the wolves'

Andy Coulson was last night accused of throwing his former staff "to the wolves", after it emerged that the Downing Street spin doctor had spoken to police investigating allegations of illegal phone-hacking while he was editor of News of the World.