Matthew Bell: The IoS Diary

Denies everything

Share
Related Topics

As if he hasn't got enough on his plate, word reaches me that Tiger Woods has found himself in the rough at the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews.

Even before we learned of his colourful bedroom behaviour, his antics on the course left much to be desired, with tantrums and swearing as much a part of the performance as impeccably judged swings. After years of turning a blind eye to this, I'm told senior figures at the club have issued Woods with a warning, which could jeopardise his entry to next year's British Open at the terrifyingly smart club. but he's probably got other things to worry about for now.

***

Since he left Downing Street there have been various attempts to portray Alastair Campbell as someone other than a motor-mouthed Machiavelli. But it seems he really is human. After watching a rugby match at Keighley, West Yorkshire, where he used to be a fan, he was signing copies of his book when winger Sam Gardner sidled over with his own draft novel. "I expect you get a lot of this, but could you take a look?" he asked, handing over a plastic bag. While some hearts might have sunk, Campbell duly read the book and passed it on to his agent. When Gardner got in touch again he was thrilled to be given various tips and suggested tweaks, and The Rectifires has now been published. "He's written me a foreword," Gardner tells me. "He's a nice man – polite and down to earth." The rehabilitation, annoyingly, continues.

***

Those who say Boris Johnson is nothing but trouble for David Cameron should know that the Mayor of London is doing his best to help. On Friday, a star chamber will meet to discuss whether Edward McMillan-Scott, Tory MEP for Yorkshire, was wrongly ejected from the party after he took a stand against the ECR, Cameron's new European group. Many Tories feel McMillan-Scott was unfairly treated and now there is a suggestion their number may include Boris. Johnson knows McMillan-Scott from his years as a Brussels correspondent, and is backing his "less meat, less heat" position. "Boris told me he wanted to lose a stone, so I told him to eat less meat," McMillan-Scott tells me. "I lost two and a half stone by not eating meat." Fine, but what about his other campaign? Is Boris backing it? Boris's spokesman is tight-lipped. "This is not something he would get involved in either way," he says. Boris? Judicious? Well, well.

***

Producers of Have I Got News For You have grown ever more adventurous in their choice of guests, but the union leader Bob Crow was a tangential thought too far. As Crow, better known for calling strikes than cracking gags, was introduced to the studio audience before the cameras rolled, there were loud boos and hisses, as though a pantomime villain had walked on stage. A programme source explains: "Our audience is composed mainly of London commuters. They are not amused by Tube strikes."

***

One top environmentalist who won't be anywhere near Copenhagen is David Bellamy, the respected botanist and lisping Father Christmas lookalike. He is yet to be convinced of the link between human activity and climate change, and is currently busy on his memoirs, which set out his views. Since coming out as a sceptic, Bellamy has been ostracised by the BBC, he says, and his profile is certainly not what it used to be. But he continues to campaign to save the rainforest, and is vigorously opposed to palm oil plantations in Borneo, which are threatening orang-utans. He tells me he is also set to open a giant Butterfly World in Hertfordshire in February. And where did we catch up? On a 1p Ryanair flight to Pisa. Oops!

***

An awkward scene was narrowly avoided last week for David Blunkett and his one-time lover Kimberly Quinn. Both were invited to the launch of Dogs in Vogue, a glossy book about the pooches used in shoots for the fashion mag. The party was in aid of Guidedogs for the Blind, trainers of Blunkett's labradors, and was co-hosted by Vogue, whose publisher is Stephen Quinn, husband of Kimberly. Happily, Blunkett declined his invitation, allowing them an event-free evening.

m.bell@independent.co.uk

React Now

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

Service Delivery Manager - Software Company

£40000 - £50000 per annum: Ashdown Group: Service Delivery Manager Kingston Up...

Year 3 Teacher

£90 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Hull: Year 3 Primary Teacher in HullA f...

Drama Teacher - Hull and Grimsby

Negotiable: Randstad Education Hull: The JobRandstad are currently in need of ...

Reception Teacher

£90 - £120 per day: Randstad Education Hull: Randstad Education is the UK mark...

Day In a Page

Read Next
 

Daily catch-up: Ed Miliband on low pay; Alan Johnson on Betjeman; Tom Freeman on editing

John Rentoul
A roller-coaster tale from the 'voice of a generation'

Not That Kind of Girl:

A roller-coaster tale from 'voice of a generation' Lena Dunham
London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice. In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence

London is not bedlam or a cradle of vice

In fact it, as much as anywhere, deserves independence
Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with Malcolm McLaren

Vivienne Westwood 'didn’t want' relationship with McLaren

Designer 'felt pressured' into going out with Sex Pistols manager
Jourdan Dunn: Model mother

Model mother

Jordan Dunn became one of the best-paid models in the world
Apple still coolest brand – despite U2 PR disaster

Apple still the coolest brand

Despite PR disaster of free U2 album
Scottish referendum: The Yes vote was the love that dared speak its name, but it was not to be

Despite the result, this is the end of the status quo

Boyd Tonkin on the fall-out from the Scottish referendum
Manolo Blahnik: The high priest of heels talks flats, Englishness, and why he loves Mary Beard

Manolo Blahnik: Flats, Englishness, and Mary Beard

The shoe designer who has been dubbed 'the patron saint of the stiletto'
The Beatles biographer reveals exclusive original manuscripts of some of the best pop songs ever written

Scrambled eggs and LSD

Behind The Beatles' lyrics - thanks to Hunter Davis's original manuscript copies
'Normcore' fashion: Blending in is the new standing out in latest catwalk non-trend

'Normcore': Blending in is the new standing out

Just when fashion was in grave danger of running out of trends, it only went and invented the non-trend. Rebecca Gonsalves investigates
Dance’s new leading ladies fight back: How female vocalists are now writing their own hits

New leading ladies of dance fight back

How female vocalists are now writing their own hits
Mystery of the Ground Zero wedding photo

A shot in the dark

Mystery of the wedding photo from Ground Zero
His life, the universe and everything

His life, the universe and everything

New biography sheds light on comic genius of Douglas Adams
Save us from small screen superheroes

Save us from small screen superheroes

Shows like Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D are little more than marketing tools
Reach for the skies

Reach for the skies

From pools to football pitches, rooftop living is looking up
These are the 12 best hotel spas in the UK

12 best hotel spas in the UK

Some hotels go all out on facilities; others stand out for the sheer quality of treatments