Miles Kington Remembered: The strange case of the disappearing crime tsar

12 June 2001

Share
Related Topics

They said on the news this morning that they've found a middle- aged man wandering round Britain with total memory loss. All that is known about him is that he has a Yorkshire accent. When questioned about his past, he says that he only has a dim memory of being in a great disaster and has no idea what to do next. So far nobody has shown any desire to claim him...

A reader writes: Dear Mr Kington, What on earth is all this about?

Miles Kington writes: Oh, there was a report on the news today that a man who was found mugged in Toronto has completely lost all memory of who he is. One of the few clues they have to go on is that he has a Yorkshire accent. Well, it occurred to me that William Hague is in a similar situation. He has just lost his identity and is looking for a new life. And he has a Yorkshire accent. So...

A reader writes: So you thought you would write about one in terms of the other?

Miles Kington writes: Yes.

A reader writes: To what end?

Miles Kington writes: Well, to amuse you...

A reader writes: And you have failed. Not only did I not know about the man in Toronto, but I am less than fascinated by the fate of William Hague. Try something else.

Miles Kington writes: Oh... OK. Here we go again ...

The Tory party is pinning its hopes on an adaptation of the Survivor formula. In their version of the show, five candidates for the leadership will enter a committee room and one after the other will explain why they should take over the world as soon as the public tires of Tony Blair. One by one, they will be voted off by the viewers until the winner, the last one left, will become the new leader of the Tory party, and it will be his job ...

A reader writes: Or her job.

Miles Kington writes: I beg your pardon?

A reader writes: Or her job. The winner could be Ann Widdecombe.

Miles Kington writes: No, it couldn't.

A reader writes: Why not?

Miles Kington writes: Because she could never be anything but a sidekick. She is just right for the jolly, Dawn French-type, supporting role, not for best actress.

A reader writes: Talking of which, what's Dawn French been up to recently? She seems to have vanished...

Miles Kington writes: Ah! That gives me an idea...!

Where Are They Now? A regular feature which looks at those who were once on the front pages but have now vanished from the headlines. This week, we look at the recent careers of such forgotten people as Boris Yeltsin, David Mellor, Virginia Bottomley, Paddy Ashdown, John Birt ...

A reader writes: Good God, John Birt! I'd forgotten about him. The last we heard was that Tony Blair was making him his Crime Tsar. But that was years ago. Whatever happened to him?

Miles Kington writes: I don't know, but I feel another idea coming on...

I was quietly reading the paper in our rooms at 221b Baker Street (writes Dr Watson), when Holmes interrupted me with a question.

"Have you ever heard of John Birt, Watson?"

"I don't believe I have. Who is he?"

"He is the man who is known as the Tsar of Crime. Any crime that is committed in London is said to be his responsibility."

"Good Lord, Holmes! If he is so important, I am amazed I have not heard of him."

"Oh, he is an exceedingly clever man, Watson. Anonymity is his speciality. He has been known to worm his way to the top of a national organisation, take money out of it and leave it a shadow of its former self. His hand is everywhere but his fingerprint nowhere. He is quite capable of taking money even from the Government and remaining invisible in return. A master of disguise, he has been mistaken in the past for Chris Patten, Alistair Darling, even John Major..."

A reader writes: I'm not sure that this is getting anywhere, except towards the libel courts. I would advise you to try something else.

Miles Kington writes: We've run out of space, I'm afraid.

A reader writes: Well, see you again tomorrow.

Miles Kington writes: Me, yes. You, no.

React Now

Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Ashdown Group: Marketing & Sales Manager

£40000 per annum: Ashdown Group: A reputable organisation within the leisure i...

Tradewind Recruitment: Science Teacher

£90 - £140 per day: Tradewind Recruitment: I am currently working in partnersh...

Recruitment Genius: Doctors - Dubai - High "Tax Free" Earnings

£96000 - £200000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Looking for a better earning p...

Recruitment Genius: PHP Developer

£32000 - £36000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A rapidly expanding company in ...

Day In a Page

Read Next
British Prime Minister Tony Blair (L) pictured shaking hands with Libyan leader Colonel Moamer Kadhafi on 25 March 2004.  

There's nothing wrong with Labour’s modernisers except how outdated they look

Mark Steel
 

Any chance the other parties will run their election campaigns without any deceit or nastiness?

Nigel Farage
Isis hostage crisis: The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power

Isis hostage crisis

The prisoner swap has only one purpose for the militants - recognition its Islamic State exists and that foreign nations acknowledge its power, says Robert Fisk
Missing salvage expert who found $50m of sunken treasure before disappearing, tracked down at last

The runaway buccaneers and the ship full of gold

Salvage expert Tommy Thompson found sunken treasure worth millions. Then he vanished... until now
Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Homeless Veterans appeal: ‘If you’re hard on the world you are hard on yourself’

Maverick artist Grayson Perry backs our campaign
Assisted Dying Bill: I want to be able to decide about my own death - I want to have control of my life

Assisted Dying Bill: 'I want control of my life'

This week the Assisted Dying Bill is debated in the Lords. Virginia Ironside, who has already made plans for her own self-deliverance, argues that it's time we allowed people a humane, compassionate death
Move over, kale - cabbage is the new rising star

Cabbage is king again

Sophie Morris banishes thoughts of soggy school dinners and turns over a new leaf
11 best winter skin treats

Give your moisturiser a helping hand: 11 best winter skin treats

Get an extra boost of nourishment from one of these hard-working products
Paul Scholes column: The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him

Paul Scholes column

The more Jose Mourinho attempts to influence match officials, the more they are likely to ignore him
Frank Warren column: No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans

Frank Warren's Ringside

No cigar, but pots of money: here come the Cubans
Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee