Tory MPs Warned of Colditz-Style “POW Camp” Away Day

Tory MPs making their way to their thought camp this week have been warned it will be as “atmospheric as a POW camp”. Keith Simpson’s memo, circulated by government whips, tells plotters visiting Oxfordshire’s answer to Colditz:

“colleagues should be aware that it is over a mile to the perimeter fence which the whips patrol and a group of plain clothed parliamentary security officials led by John Hayes, wearing a black leather coat and fedora, are based at the local railway station – who will detain escapees and remind them that the reshuffle has yet to take.”

There is a strict dress code for those in attendance:

“Although the advice by the Chief Whip is “casual”, I think he forgot to preface it with “smart”. Casual is jeans and a T-shirt and we wouldn’t want to be mistaken for Young Liberal Democrats. Dress code is something that produces great angst amongst colleagues desperate to discover what the Prime Minister will be wearing. In 1997 the Parliamentary Party was pilloried by the media for its interpretation of “smart casual” for the first ever Away Day. Most of us male MPs interpreted this as wearing a Fair Isle pullover, which might have been knitted by our nannies in the 1950s, over our suit trousers, although the late Alan Clark insisted on wearing a tweed country suit with his Old Etonian tie. Women MPs There is no one good bluffer’s guide in this subject but colleagues will be aware that “smart casual” will be interpreted by male colleagues on a scale from Jacob Rees-Mogg to Nick Boles and female MPs from Claire Perry to Esther McVey. If in doubt ask Nicholas Soames who will talk about “grocers and rattin’. ”

As Guido revealed in his Sun on Sunday column yesterday, the “government source” who told the Times Ed Miliband is a “f**king c**t and a copper-bottomed s**t” was Simpson himself. He is William Hague’s PPS. You can read Guido’s column online here

UPDATE: Cue an @GeneralBoles photoshop classic:




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Quote of the Day

IDS responds to Juncker’s pints analogy earlier:

“Mr Juncker knows a little bit more about the bar than perhaps many of us do.”

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