End of an era

After 19 years at Newsnight, Political editor Michael Crick has moved on to pastures new and this blog is now closed.

Read full article End of an era

Conservatives may not fight police elections

The Conservatives are seriously considering not standing candidates for the elections for the new elected police commissioners which are due to take place next May - providing the legislation gets through parliament.

The policy has been actively pursued by David Cameron and the Conservatives, against strong scepticism from many Liberal Democrats, yet it seems the Tories may play only an indirect role in the process.

Read full article Conservatives may not fight police elections

Reshuffle ready if Huhne has to quit

With news that Essex police have passed their file on Chris Huhne to the Crown Prosecution Service, I am told that Nick Clegg and David Cameron have already agreed on what would happen in a mini-reshuffle if Huhne has to resign as Energy Secretary, in charge of Department of Energy and Climate Change.

The reshuffle, which would only involve Liberal Democrats, has been designed to cause the minimum of disruption.

Read full article Reshuffle ready if Huhne has to quit

Was Hague Conservatives' first link with Coulson?

Attention has focussed on Prime Minister David Cameron for appointing ex-News of the World editor Andy Coulson as his communications director, and Chancellor George Osborne for recommending him to Cameron.

That much is established. What has received very little attention so far is William Hague's links with Andy Coulson, which date back to 2003.

Read full article Was Hague Conservatives' first link with Coulson?

1953 front page news - Murdoch fails to answer summons

  • 14 July 2011
  • From the section UK

I've delved back into my archives and found the following story, which seems rather amusing, especially given recent events.

From the Oxford Mail, 14 February 1953:

Read full article 1953 front page news - Murdoch fails to answer summons

Cameron's letter to save BBC Oxford News

"Is this the right placeā€¦?" the Prime Minister pleaded in his own handwriting.

David Cameron was writing to the BBC Director General in an attempt to save the BBC Oxford News TV service. He was writing, of course, purely in his capacity as MP for Witney in Oxfordshire.

Read full article Cameron's letter to save BBC Oxford News

Miliband plans to cut union block vote

The unions are getting it from all directions at the moment. Whilst Conservative ministers are threatening to restrict further the unions ability to go on strike, the Labour leader is planning action to cut their powers too.

This, despite the fact that Ed Miliband was only elected leader on the votes of affiliated union members.

Read full article Miliband plans to cut union block vote

On the death of the oldest former MP, James Allason

The Telegraph carries an obituary for James Allason, who had the distinction of being the oldest ex-MP before his death eleven days ago.

Allason, who was 98, was the father of Rupert Allason (aka the spy writer Nigel West), also a former Tory MP. He was member for Hemel Hempstead from 1959 to 1974.

Read full article On the death of the oldest former MP, James Allason

Osborne's student paper hazy days

The editorial of the latest edition of Isis, the Oxford University magazine, reveals interesting details about Chancellor George Osborne's editorship of the magazine, back in 1992.

The cover of one of Mr Osborne's editions was adorned by two large cannabis leaves.

Read full article Osborne's student paper hazy days

Was NHS reform review too rushed?

ENTRY FROM MONDAY 13 JUNE 2011 AT 1600BST:

It all seems terribly rushed. Professor Steve Field has just given a press briefing for his NHS Future Forum report, and one couldn't help feeling they could have done with more time.

Prof Field stressed that they'd only had eight weeks to reach their conclusions. Several areas, he said, needed a lot more work. And twice he told us that he's only realised important points within the "last couple of days". So what if he'd had a couple more days, or weeks?

Read full article Was NHS reform review too rushed?