Parliament’s £8000 Brexit Night Booze-Up

While the big-ticket parties on Brexit night were the most sought-after invitations – Downing Street, Jon Moynihan’s mansion in Chelsea, and Farage’s Private Member’s club – those not on the VIP invite lists had to make do with sticking to Parliament’s meagre seven bars.

Guido’s FOI now shows staffers, MPs, and Lords got through nearly £8000 worth of booze to celebrate our newly-won independence, with the Woolsack Sports and Social bar alone raking in £5000 before rowdy staffers were kicked out by Parliamentary security at 10 pm.

Spirits were clearly high and demand for spirits even higher, with 142 shots sold, along with 10 bottles of champagne and prosecco. Conversely, the group who ordered 21 shots of Courvoisier were clearly drowning their Remainer sorrows…

MPs’ usual haunt, Strangers, took in less than £100 on Brexit night. Readers might presume the lack of sales was from MPs favouring the more glamourous parties, though Guido understands CCHQ advised MPs to celebrate in their constituencies to avoid looking out-of-touch. One Tory rising star had planned on going to her local with live music, only for the pro-EU band to cancel when they found out her intentions…

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What’s Been Going on in Parliament’s Pubs?

Any guesses what’s been going on in Parliament’s Woolsack bar?…

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House of Commons Rugby Team ‘Sexism’

A scrum of woke Parliamentary rugby players are miffed off today as a result of an email from the Chairman of the Commons and Lords Rugby Team, Mark Pawsey (who is also, coincidentally, the MP for the Rugby constituency). He has invited male MPs, Lords and staffers to sign up for a full tournament of rugby, his email quite reasonably invited female MPs to a less brutal game of touch rugby. “Nice bit of sexism” one rugby-loving staffer rather unfairly commented…

Writing to MPs with the subject line “Do you or anyone in your office play rugby?”, Pawsey explained the team plays “for fun under a modified version of the game called ‘Golden Oldies’ which enables those whose careers are nearly over to continue playing…”. The invitation seemed open to all, however the captain went on to say

“In previous sessions we have also accommodated lady players by having a short game of Touch Rugby before the match. So, ladies are also welcome to join!”

It would obviously be a dangerously uneven contact sport with mixed teams, this seems a perfectly reasonable compromise. What a ruck up!

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Sports and Social Rebrand Row

An FOI request by the Yorkshire Post has revealed significant internal strife over the re-branding of Parliament’s unjustly maligned Sports and Social Bar over the summer. Commons Clerk David Natzler was concerned that the new name “The Woolsack” risked associating the “reputation of the bar [not a thing I would want to be tied to]” with the “dignity and position” of the House of Lords. In one rather sarcastic email Natzler wrote: “if Benet etc are happy with the risk I look forward to headlines ‘Woolsack closed after sexual assault claims’. Don’t you have a heraldic animal or something…”

Interestingly, seemingly no one picked up on the anatomical nickname the Woolsack has quickly earned among the researchers who frequent it. At the time officials advised against a naming competition due to the risk of it “being mocked in the press.” Spoil Sports…

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Refurbished Sports & Social Bar Limits Number of Guests

Guido hears that alongside the transformation of Parliament’s infamous Sports and Social bar into ‘The Wool Sack’, Parliamentary authorities have sneakily reduced the number of guests allowed to be brought into the bar by a passholder from six to just two. Passholders on the Parliamentary estate can still take up to six guests elsewhere…

This move appears to be an attempt to crack down on rowdy behaviour after the bar faced closure last year over a glassing. Guido isn’t convinced about this move. From his experience, it usually isn’t the guests who make the trouble…

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Police Called to Sports and Social After ‘Fake Pass’ Scare

Police were called to Parliament’s Sports and Social bar last night after a man was challenged over a ‘fake’ House of Lords pass. Scottish Conservatives and SNP researchers spotted a man in the bar wearing what they described as a counterfeit parliamentary pass. One told Guido:

“It was obviously a fake pass. The red lines were the wrong distance apart, the numbers were the wrong size and it wasn’t double sided… When he was challenged he hid the pass in his pocket and then fled the parliamentary estate… others also saw him earlier this week on the terrace.”

A Met Police spokesman said there were no arrests. Witnesses said the police took statements. A House of Lords Spokesman said:

“The Police attended the Sports and Social Bar last night in relation to an access issue. It was not in response to a disturbance or breach of the peace.”

The incident comes weeks after a man was arrested after breaching Parliament’s security fence and attempting to climb scaffolding on the building. Management of the troubled Sports and Social is due to be brought “in house” after summer recess. Another Parliamentary security scare…

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