Seeing as Frances Cross, the MP’s wife, is a principal character in ‘Burying Bad News’ it was quite nice to bump into Helen, my local MP’s wife briefly at the weekend. I don’t know her particularly well but certainly well enough to say hello to and have a chat. I know David, herÂ husband and a shadow minister, slightly less well but I’ve met him on quite a few occasions and enough to say hello. (For the sake of their confidence I won’tÂ say exactly where or in what circumstances I met herÂ or even how I know them but it’s not in an overtly political context). Unlike Frances, Helen is a completely approachable, friendly and level headed person as is her husband, who’sÂ pretty likely toÂ become a minister should the Conservatives win in May.
I’ve also met quite a few other MPs and Ministers.Â I used to live in Vince Cable’s constituency and once took a deputation of neighbours to his surgery (an experience that I allude to in a chapterÂ of BBN). Phil Woolas, who’s Minister of Immigration, came to my mother in law’s birthday party a couple of years ago and I had quite a chat with him. My mother-in-law used to have a photoÂ taken of herself with Tony Blair every year at the Labour PartyÂ conference. She’s notÂ managed it so far withÂ Gordon. I told her before last year’s conference that she’d better be quick in getting one.