Boozed Up BBC Partygoers Go Out With a Bang

20130328-085132.jpg Copious booze, staff nicking mementos and partygoers scoring in the studios; the Beeb’s Television Centre goodbye party sounds like a night to remember. Or, more likely, forget:

Meanwhile today half the hacks in the BBC’s swanky new studio are on strike over job cuts. Happy Easter weekend…

Double Standards in Labour Education

Backbench dunce Ian Mearns wasted no time in sticking his oar in to the bitch fight between Tim Loughton and the anonymous @ToryEducation yesterday. The Member of the Education Select Committee must have thought he was onto a right wheeze up there on his high horse:

“This extraordinary attack is another example of derogatory language…. There is no place for these kind of personal attacks in public life. The Education Secretary needs to take action.”

Guido is looking forward to the poor delicate flower press releasing his concern about another Honourable Member’s sharp words last night. Brownite boot-boy Ian Austin went off on one at Greg Hands, amusingly about the very same Ian Mearns:

Guido has asked Mearns whether he is standing by his line that “there is no place for these kind of personal attacks in public life”. For some reason he has yet to reply…

Shepherd’s Bye

Lamentations across Westminster village as word spreads that upmarket lunch spot Shepherd’s has shut down. What was rumoured to be a gas leak has now been confirmed as a full closure. Guido is shocked and saddened. There are too many poncy restaurants in Westminster and for some reason Shepherd’s  had been recently remodelled and menu changed for worse.

He did enjoy end of meal looks of horror when a politico leaving would realise he had been braying loudly at the next table.

And they made a good Bloody Mary…

Eric Joyce Appeal For Witnesses

Nearly two weeks on from Eric Joyce’s latest brush with the law, this is still up on the door of parliament’s Sports and Social bar. Researchers hawking videos of the commotion around the papers should get in touch…

Clegg Says Scrap MPs’ Booze Subsidy

Clegg initially tried to deny the existence of the Commons booze subsidy on LBC this morning, but when presented with the facts by Nick Ferrari the Deputy PM gave in: “I haven’t seen the prices, but my knee jerk reaction is why should MPs be subsidised for drinking in the House of Commons?”

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The £5.8 million subsidy would be a good place to begin, but it is also worth pointing out that since parliament’s watering holes are inside a Royal Palace, many of the bars pay no rent or business rates whatsoever. Research by the ASI calculates that they are saving £1.4 million-a-year as a result. All at the taxpayer’s expense…

Here are some of the other posts on the issue Guido has put out over the years:

Eric Joyce Staffer Martin Brown Knocked Woman to GroundMP Reacted Angrily When Told His Friend Arrested

ERIC-JOYCE-MARTIN-BROWN

Guido has spoken to witnesses about last night’s fracas, this is what he has pieced together from various accounts.

At about 10.15 pm last night Eric Joyce’s researcher Martin Brown (pictured on the right above) exchanged words with Louise (an MP’s researcher, whose surname is known to Guido) outside the Sports and Social in the area where people smoke in the Commons Inner Court. In the ensuing altercation Louise was knocked to the ground.

alex-cruz-vidal

Alex Cruz Vidal (pictured, right), a researcher for deputy speaker Nigel Evans, intervened to protect Louise and restrain Martin Brown by wrestling him to the ground and sitting on him. The administrator of the Sports & Social came out and with Alex’s help manhandled a shocked Martin Brown into the bar’s little cupboard sized office and locked him inside until the police arrived. Police came to arrest Brown and Eric Joyce showed up shouting at the cops.

Joyce – who had already been involved in some argie-bargie in the Sports and Social earlier that night – is said to have arrived at the scene and reacted angrily to being told by a copper about the incident – he pushed the copper, who came back to restrain him, whereupon Joycey threw a punch at the copper. At this point another copper joined in to restrain him, resulting in the Honourable Member for Falkirk ending up on the floor being handcuffed before being taken away into the back of a police van.

By this time there was a large crowd and around a dozen policemen outside the Sports & Social – including PoliticsHome’s Tony Grew – who only saw the second altercation involving Joyce not the original altercation involving Martin Brown that kicked the whole thing off. Police closed the Sports & Social and the Strangers Bar early…

Police have this morning contacted those witnesses who had their names taken last night, to tell them they will be required to give full statements in due course. Charges will almost certainly follow…

Coincidentally Joyce’s 12-month community order for his last brawl expired six days ago. Two things that are clearly reinforced by this brawl; we need to end the obscene taxpayer subsidy that means the Commons bars are the cheapest pubs in Central London, secondly we need a real power of MPs’ recall. As we were promised by the coalition parties after the expenses scandal…

Join Guido at the YBF Rally, Then Fatboy Slim

Guido is off to parliament to speak at the ultrasound Young Britons’ Foundation rally this evening. Afterwards he is hoping to gatecrash Fatboy Slim’s charity DJ set at the Terrace bar.

Right here, right now – could hardly be more appropriate for YBF…

Lonely Tories Don't Need Dates for Tomorrow Night

This invitation was sent last night from the Whips office to all Tory staffers:

You are cordially invited to attend the
Conservative Parliamentary Staff New Year Party
Thursday 14th February 2013
6pm – midnight

It seems they don’t have much faith in young Tories having dates tomorrow night then.

Right Here, Right Now, In Parliament Fat Boy Slim to DJ Westminster

Guido is preparing to relive his more youthful days as Fat Boy Slim is playing in Parliament on 6 March, thanks to the Last Night A DJ Saved My Life Foundation. Norman Cook is excited too: “I’ve played some exciting and unique places around the world from Bondi Beach to The Great Wall of China to an Igloo but playing in the House of Commons might be the most unique to date.” See you at the “House The House” event.[…]

+ READ MORE +

Sally's Boozy Night With Tory Boys

Slumped in an alleyway outside a bar: this was Sally Bercow in the early hours of Friday morning. The Speaker’s wife had spent a boozy evening with young male Tory researchers, kicking off at the Sports and Social in Parliament before heading to Players’, a regular piano dive for twenty-something staffers.[…]

+ READ MORE +

Knife Out for Chuka

Guido was sad to miss two-faced Chuka Umunna dining in a pub popular with the Guy Newsroom team last night. Judging by his choice of meal, the Shadow Business Secretary was putting on his man of the people act, though a co-conspiratorial vintner whispers that the mask slipped and Chuka awkwardly came a cropper with his cutlery:

“He had a burger and a pint of s**t lager.

[…]

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Guido’s Christmas Drinks

xmas

Guido is off to the Westminster Arms for our Christmas drinks. Join fellow readers, co-conspirators, Westminster wonks, movers and shakers, and seasoned drunks as we toast the end of another year of plots, rumours and conspiracy. Come down…
[…]

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Vinter William’s Fine Wines

hagye2

Say what you like about William Hague, the man certainly knows how to play host. Guido has got hold of the list of wines he has served to visiting kings, queens, presidents and prime ministers over the last year. No expense has been spared, out of our pocket naturally.[…]

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Guido’s Christmas Drinks

santaGuido’s Christmas drinks this year will be on Wednesday 19th December at 5pm, bringing together readers, co-conspirators, Westminster wonks, weirdos,  movers and shakers, and seasoned drunks.

If you fancy coming along then make sure you’ve subscribed to the Guidogram for details of the SW1 location nearer the time. […]

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The Sacked Soiree

After the September reshuffle sacked former ministers got together to form a drinking/dining club, loosely named the Geronimo Club due to the fact they shared the date of their demise with the old chieftain. Guido hears that the name has gone out of the window, but the grouping is going strong, indeed apparently tonight will see their inaugural knees up.[…]

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Flashman Dave Snaps at Tory Rebel Prime Minister Swears at Andrew Bingham MP

Tempers are fraying in the run up to tonight’s vote. Guido hears that Cameron was at a drinks gathering for northern Tory MPs. Andrew Bingham was there and got the full Flashman treatment as a consequence of having signed the Reckless amendment. […]

+ READ MORE +



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Quote of the Day

Heather Wheeler talks to Burton Mail about her tweet…

“It was a tongue in cheek pop after the European Parliament tweet – it was purely that. I also wanted to congratulate Team GB on a brilliant result and thirdly congratulate the Commonwealth countries who also did very well. Fourth, I am also looking forwarded to establishing new trade agreements. That was it – nothing more. Let’s just enjoy the summer!”

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