Culture Secretary Billed Taxpayer for Queen Posters

Last year then-Culture Secretary Michelle Donelan defended the use of taxpayer cash on the Queen’s funeral, saying it represented “value for money”. It seems not all the mourning was value for money, however, as Guido can reveal Donelan chose to bill the taxpayer for her constituency office window tribute to the Queen.

Anyone wandering past Donelan’s Chippenham office last September was greeted with two displayed A3 posters filled with pictures of her late Majesty, accompanied with the Secretary of State’s memorial. Both posters were identical.

Expenses FOIs now reveal she put the two posters on expenses, totalling £84 plus VAT for a total of £100.80. Boris once had to apologise for putting a Remembrance Sunday wreath on expenses – will Michelle apologise?

mdi-timer 15 February 2023 @ 16:53 15 Feb 2023 @ 16:53 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
733 Journalists Skipped the Queue for the Queen

Guido always felt the amount of abuse Holly and Phil got for skipping the queue for the Queen was excessive, given countless other hacks got away with it. Indeed, it has to be said that one of Guido’s own reporters took advantage of the fast-track to spend half an hour in Westminster Hall watching the procession. Now, an FoI has revealed just how many other journalists skipped the queue. 733…

Most surprising of all, given they led a lot of the Holly and Phil hate, is the number of Sun hacks who skipped the queue. On September 21 the paper splashed with Queue-jump Holly Fights to Keep Job”. On October 1 they splashed with Phil £1M Ads Axed”. The number of Sun journalists who jumped said queue? 35

ITV themselves, of whom Phil and Holly were just two, sent a whopping 21 journalists along the hack fast-track. The Mail, which broke news of the social media backlash and revealed that Phil and Holly weren’t on the accreditation list, also sent 21 journalists from their various outlets. Taking the crown, however was the BBC, who got 62 journalists in to view the Queen lying in state without queueing up along the Southbank for 12 hours. 

The total number of passes being applied for each year has risen from 122 in 2017 to 385 in 2021 – with a peak of 503 in 2019. Of over 1600 applications between 2017-2021, just three were rejected – all from the BBC.

The British media have the ultimate golden ticket to state occasions these days…

mdi-timer 4 November 2022 @ 11:30 4 Nov 2022 @ 11:30 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
Devastated IPSA Still in Mourning Over Queen

Along with every other aspect of British life grinding to a halt following the death of the Queen, on 12 September IPSA announced it was delaying publication of MP business cost data out of respect to Her Majesty. It’s what she would have wanted…

Exactly two weeks on from its announcement, and a week on from the end of national mourning, IPSA is not only yet to publish the figures, it’s yet to announce a new date on which they will do so. Given it also stopped publishing MPs’ expenses data in light of Sir David Amess’s murder, Guido continues to believe the body responsible for publishing MPs’ expenses data is desperate for any excuse not to do their job…

mdi-timer 26 September 2022 @ 17:15 26 Sep 2022 @ 17:15 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
MPs’ Staff Angry at Queuing Like Everyone Else for Queen’s Lying-in-State

The parliamentary staffer squabble over the Queen’s Lying-in-State is about to get worse. Despite rumours that Commons Leader Penny Mordaunt is reviewing the decision to ban MPs’ staffers from skipping the queue, a new announcement on the parliamentary intranet reveals those who already have priority access – including grey passholders such as cleaners and cooks – are now even allowed to invite a guest as they pay their respects:

MPs and Lords are entitled to up to four guests; grey passholders are allowed one. Staffers, many of whom have a not dissimilar sense of entitlement, will have to queue up for 20 hours like everyone else. Unless they make friends with a priority attendee pretty quickly…

mdi-timer 13 September 2022 @ 16:59 13 Sep 2022 @ 16:59 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
IPSA Pauses Publishing MP Expenses in Memory of The Queen

IPSA has announced that scheduled publication of business cost data will be delayed as a result of the death of the Queen. She was a massive opponent of publishing MP’s expenses data; it’s what she would have wanted…

This latest nonsensical expression of sympathy with His Majesty the King’s recent bereavement comes just days after Guido revealed two MPs had suspended “non-urgent” casework as a mark of respect. IPSA’s move also comes almost a year after they stopped publishing MPs’ expenses details in the wake of Sir David Amess’s murder. It’s almost like they’re looking for any excuse…

mdi-timer 13 September 2022 @ 15:02 13 Sep 2022 @ 15:02 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
MP Submits Complaint About Royal-Hating Hansard Reporter

Following Guido’s report that a monarch-despising Hansard reporter had skipped the queue yesterday to watch the King’s address in Westminster Hall, he understands an MP has lodged a complaint against the staffer with the speaker. The MP’s complaint is on the grounds that Dominic Borghino’s behaviour, both in his posts and selfies around the estate, are in breach of the rules for passholders. Staff are constantly reminded holding a pass a privilege not a right.  The MP opines:

“I suppose if the most interesting thing about you is that you’ve grown a mullet and gained some much craved attention mocking the death of a 96 year of Great Grandmother, then what we really should feel is pity.

However, the truth is that holding a pass to work on the parliamentary estate is a privilege and not a right and it comes with responsibilities and an acceptance of basic standards and courtesies. This individual clearly has not met those standards and I hope that his pass will be reviewed.

If he’s so offended by the Crown in Parliament which underpins our parliamentary democracy, then perhaps he ought not work in that Parliament!”

After seeing Borghino’s picture, former Cabinet Minister Nigel Adams last night tweeted “Hadn’t realised Joe Exotic was on day release.” 

mdi-timer 13 September 2022 @ 11:10 13 Sep 2022 @ 11:10 mdi-twitter mdi-facebook mdi-whatsapp mdi-telegram mdi-linkedin mdi-email mdi-comment View Comments
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