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Tellytubbies not included

  • Martha Kearney
  • 2 Oct 06, 11:36 PM

So what's the big talking point here at the Conservative conference? Well, apart from the Tellytubby style set (see our menu shot tonight) and rows about tax, the bars and cafes are filled with battle stories from the front or "How I Got My Conference Pass". People have queued for hours and hours yesterday and today in order to get in. Children's Commissioner Sir Al Aynsley-Green, Liberty director Shami Chakrabarti, former women's cricketer Rachael Heyhoe-Flint and several MPs were among those forced to wait. Environmental campaigner Zac Goldsmith missed a speaking slot at a conference fringe event when he was delayed. And the party chairman Francis Maude has had to cancel a fringe in order to hold an emergency meeting with the police. Shadow Cabinet ministers David Willets and Andrew Lansley were stuck outside (which doesn't say much for their profiles). Rumours are rife that Mr Lansley will have to sleep in his car because his hotel is inside the cordon.

If you do get stuck , then you wait inside the Pavilion theatre where there is a risk you will become an audience for a speech whether you want to be or not. Iain Duncan Smith the former leader decided that if people couldn't get in, he would bring his fringe meeting to them. IDS takes socially excluded message to the conference's excluded is the headline on one Tory website.

One line of spin is that the reasons for the delays is because the Tories are victims of their own success - there are 2,000 more people here than last year. Not sure that will wash with the increasingly restive lines.

Monday, 2 October, 2006

  • Newsnight
  • 2 Oct 06, 07:02 PM

cameron.jpgThe opening of the Conservative Party Conference; football and bungs in the light of Lord Stevens' inquiry statement today; and a surge in numbers of Iranian women attending university - what does it mean for the future of the Iran?

We'll also have reaction to the school shootings in Pennsylvania.

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