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The Spectator

Night falls on Clapham Common. Part 2 M r Gordon Brown, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, reduced the growth rate predicted for next year to around 1 per cent (compared with...

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The Spectator, 56 Doughty Street, London WC1N 2LL Telephone: 0171-405

The Spectator

1706; Fax 0171-242 0603 TAKING LIBERTIES illiam Hague may still talk with a Yorkshire accent, but intellectually he is a member of the metropolitan elite. The Youngest...

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JOAN COLLINS I . 've just spent six glorious weeks shooting in Gloucestershire. A movie that is, not pheasant. The Clandestine Marriage was Shot in and around Lord Niedpath's...

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The dangers of crossing gypsy Gordon's palm BRUCE ANDERSON 0 n Tuesday, Gordon Brown exuded confidence; rarely in the past ten years has any chancellor sounded so bullish. On...

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The Spectator

The following clichés must be avoided (like the plague) MATTHEW PARRIS A nother autumn, another Queen's Speech looms. As my 11th year of parlia- mentary sketchwriting begins,...

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Alice Miles on why Labour, new or old, is not enjoying being in government WHEN Alastair Campbell shouted at Sun- day political editors last weekend, accusing them of hounding...

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Mark Steyn explains who were the real winners and losers of the American mid-term elections New Hampshire IT was a good night for gays in South Port- land, Maine, where voters...

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Anthony Sampson says the new list of Anthony Sampson says the new list of Britain's 300 most powerful people confuses power with celebrity HAS the world of celebs, media and...

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George Trefgarne on the City's mood — and whether it is justified A SHADOW is cast across the City. As the November winds gust down Cheapside, once confident and prosperous...

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The Spectator

Michael Heath

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The Spectator

On the 80th anniversary of the Armistice, Allan Massie says Britain should not have fought in 1914-18 IN NOVELS set in 1914, or in memoirs of that year, there is often a...

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William Cash talks bottom line with Tom Wolfe New York YES, Tom Wolfe does own one of those 12-room Upper East Side apartments, as he wrote in Bonfire of the Vanities, 'the...

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Mind your language

The Spectator

MY HUSBAND was out pretending to shoot something, leaving me in a snug library on the dry side of windows streaming with unremitting rain. I picked up a volume of The...

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The Spectator

A salute to the young man who took on the 'Al - Guardian' and its Evil Empire PAUL JOHNSON T here is plenty of physical courage in this country, shown by the citations in the...

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All wind and excuses

The Spectator

THERE are parts of the British economy where an excuse is considered as good as a product. This may explain why the men from McKinsey find our productivity so dis- appointing,...


The Spectator

About this recession that's not going to happen it will be your fault or probably mine CHRISTOPHER FILDES N ow let's get this clear. There's not going to be a recession. Not...

Baring crisis

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I AM sorry to learn that Berkeley Play- house, the lap-dancing club, has gone bust, if that is the word I am looking for. Berke- ley was one of last year's more sporting new...

Bah, BAA

The Spectator

MORE trouble on the line: BAA, the ovine airport operator, bleats that not enough people are using Heathrow Express, its shiny new train that goes whizzing into Paddington. They...

It's a budgette

The Spectator

IN Gordon Brown's long-running series this one was a budgette. The first half was rhetoric with a few figures and forecasts thrown in, like plums into a pudding. The second was...

Liffe saving

The Spectator

LIFFE, London's market in financial futures, lives over Cannon Street station and had got ideas above it. That much was evident to Brian Williamson, its new chair- man, when he...

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Rusbridger refuge

The Spectator

Sir: Alan Rusbridger (Letters, 31 October) sidesteps the disclosure in my book Trial by Conspiracy that much of the Guardian's evi- dence to the Downey inquiry was, in my view,...

Endlessly personal

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Sir: Your little barmy army at The Spectator ar en't much troubled by facts in trying to do down the Guardian. In the latest of his endless personal attacks on Alan Rus- bridger...

LETTERS Rogues beware

The Spectator

Sir: I quite agree with the headline 'They do protect too much' (24 October) as a world safe for women could also be their Prison. This describes our fears for women exactly....

When in France . . .

The Spectator

Sir: Ian Ousby's reproof that I had failed to spell Gallieni with an acute accent in The First World War, which he recently reviewed (Books, 10 October), led me to object that...

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Long live the capitalists

The Spectator

Sir: Richard Kelly ('When its ideas are in, a party's out', 31 October) says that 'during the last decade Tories have suffered an addiction to radical doctrine . . . a new...


The Spectator

Sir: Nicholas Lunt's glowing testimony to the fitness regime at RMA Sandhurst (Let- ters, 24 October), while fitting, is surely born out of his own experiences. While time,...

Czech your history

The Spectator

Sir: Chamberlain and other Conservatives always defended Munich, and the contro- versy has never died. The archives about Munich, which I analysed in my book Drive to War...

Sir: The fine assurance with which Mr Mayer gives General

The Spectator

Gallieni (sic) an acute accent makes him an unreliable witness. The general has in Paris a boulevard and a metro station, but no acute accent in either (see Michelin and RATP...


The Spectator

Sir: I am sorry that Sheila Gunn ('Tories who have women trouble', 24 October) thinks that I am 'ghastly'. I have never met her, although I recall reading much about her in the...

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The Spectator

Messrs Blair and Campbell didn't know about the gay sex? Then why this call from a Whitehall lawyer? STEPHEN GLOVER O ne extraordinary fact concerning the Ron Davies affair...

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The Spectator

Time for talking turkey Minette Marrin cooks everything simple and delicious I t seems to me a pity that so much time and energy should go into cooking at Christmas. Christmas...

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FOOD AND WINE sponsored by Fortnum & Mason Caviar

The Spectator

The allure of a virgin sturgeon Nicola Formby L ast Sunday I sat on a Bill Amberg leather floor in a cream cashmere Connolly Polo-neck, Agent Provocateur fishnet hold- ups and...

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Café Royal and Mortons

The Spectator

The beautiful places David Fingleton FOOD AND WINE sponsored by Fortnum & Mason Restaurants writes of 'approachable haute cuisine that deserves a wider following', and the...

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Festive food

The Spectator

Ages of splendour Katie Dashwood C hristmas is hardly a new invention, but what culinary skills and tastes did our more hedonistic ancestors bring to the cel- ebrations?...

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Lunch dates

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Lunching with Boswell Alice Thomson B ruce is a man of 18-century habits. He lives alone in St James's in a garret at the Travellers' Club, eats cold grouse for breakfast, has...

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FOOD AND WINE sponsored by Fortnum & Mason

The Spectator

Gordon Ramsay Food company Bruce Anderson A ice Thomson not only has four Nobel laureates in her bloodline, as anyone who has read her restaurant columns in this magazine...

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The Spectator

To chablis or not to chablis Edward Heathcoat Amory I f Dr Johnson believed claret was a liquor for boys, what would he have thought of a liquid life confined to mere white...

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FOOD AND WINE sponsored by Fortnum & Mason Christian dining

The Spectator

Miraculous café Hattie Ellis C hristians have always been involved in food. The Church inherited from its Jewish progenitor a preoccupation with what to eat, and Jesus, so we...

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Dinner for two

The Spectator

Dancer's libido Deborah Bull 1. Integrity. My first, unbreakable rule is that there must be no trace of dishonesty. Nothing turns me off more than the pre- tence of a person...

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The Spectator

The man who went to dinner Alan Clark THE JOURNALS OF WOODROW WYATT edited by Sarah Curtis Macmillan, £25, pp. 748 P hew-wotta-torture! Fantastic! Amazing! I mean, these...

All books reviewed in The Spectator are available through THE

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SPECTATOR BOOKSHOP Tel: 0541 557 288

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My enemy's enemy is still my enemy

The Spectator

Stephen Glover FAYED: THE UNAUTHORISED BIOGRAPHY by Tom Bower Macmillan, £18.99, pp. 356 h ere is no one quite like Tom Bower. He wrote the definitive biography of Tiny...

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Doing one's own thing

The Spectator

Robert Taylor THE SIXTIES by Arthur Marwick OUP, ,E25, pp. 903 A s somebody who grew up in the 1960s that tumultuous decade holds fond Memories. Many now curse its influence....

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Getting off with the nearest genius

The Spectator

Philip Hensher DIARIES, 1898-1902 by Alma Mahler-Werfel Faber, £25, pp. 493 S et down this issue of The Spectator, telephone the bookshop and beg the nice ladies at the other...


The Spectator

12 Months 6 Months (52 issues) (26 issues) UK U £97.00 0 £49.00 Europe 0 £109.00 [71 £55.00 USA CI US$161 CI US$82 Australia U Aus$225 U Aus$113 Rest of World LI £.119.00 0...

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Our man on the spot

The Spectator

Jonathan Mirsky STRANGE PLACES, QUESTIONABLE PEOPLE by John Simpson Macmillan, .E20, pp. 560 Y ou can always tell when an author is really famous: his name, like a superstar's...

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Raking over the ashes

The Spectator

Allan Mallinson THE GREAT WAR GENERALS ON THE WESTERN FRONT, 1914-1918 by Robin Neillands Robinson, £25, pp. 549 THE BRITISH ARMY IN ITALY, 1917-1918 by John and Eileen Wilks...


The Spectator

BookoftheWee Save 1.3 £22.00 (rrp £25.00) The Journals of Woodrow Wyatt Volume one Wyatt's close relationship with Margaret Thatcher is the compelling focus of these...

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The Spectator

A waste of breath Lloyd Evans calls for silence on the airwaves I have a secret. I try to keep it quiet but it's hard — especially when I meet Radio Four producers interested...

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I was looking at the ceiling and then I saw

The Spectator

the sky (Southwark Playhouse Warehouse) Social harmony Michael Tanner J ohn Adams's latest piece of musical theatre, I was looking at the ceiling and then I saw the sky, is...

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Antz (PG, selected cinemas)

The Spectator

What about the workers? Mark Steyn I f you're curious about the spelling, Antz is presumably an attempt to appropriate for the insect world the street cred of gangsta rap,...

Pop music

The Spectator

Poor and angry Marcus Berkmann E nthusiasm is a precious commodity and can be destroyed forever by a few inju- dicious CD purchases. If this column has had a ranty quality...

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The Spectator

The show's on the road Susan Moore T here was no parade of elephants down Wilshire Boulevard, more's the pity. But the Big Top was up in Beverly Hills, hoist- ed above the...

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The Spectator

Richard Alston (Queen Elizabeth Hall) Unexpected delights Giannandrea Poesio I have never been that keen on anniver- sary performances. For me, the celebra- tions impinge on...

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Theatre 2

The Spectator

Real Classy Affair (Royal Court Upstairs) Saving Charlotte (Bridewell) Soho chic Sheridan Morley T hat's it, then: we've got the treble. While critical eyes have been...

Theatre 1

The Spectator

Richard HI (Royal Shakespeare Theatre, Stratford) From penitent to murderer Patrick Carnegy J ust how the actor seeks to 'play the vil- lain' is naturally the point of...

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Dumbing up James Delingpole T here was a terribly useful article in the Telegraph the other day explaining why the BBC's new adaptation of Vanity Fair is going to change the...


The Spectator

Special treatment Michael Vestey 0 ut the Muckspreader would be a good title of a programme for queer farmers; the problem is, there aren't many of them. Down on the farm...

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Not motoring

The Spectator

Secret worlds Gavin Stamp D on't Mention The Dome! Criticism of the plastic tent at Greenwich is so con- stant and shrill that one almost feels sorry for the organisers....

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The turf

The Spectator

Extreme conditions Robin Oakley Conditions were pretty extreme at Ascot on Saturday, too. Amid the incessant , relentless downpour it was less a case of judging the best...

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High life

The Spectator

Simply superior Taki h dear! I'm afraid I'm going to be forced to censure Nicholas Soames MP, a friend of very long standing. As head of the membership committee of White's...

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Country life

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Keeping your nerve Leanda de Lisle Our sullen mood lifted miraculously when we arrived at one of the hangars where the market was being held. I hadn't realised they sold...

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Singular life

The Spectator

Sticking together Petronella Wyatt T here are many good reasons for becoming Jewish — it is one of the few religions which still attaches some impor- tance to the family, for...


The Spectator

No messing Andrew Robson THOUGH seldom used, an opening bid of 4NT asks partner to name specific areas. It does not ask him to count up his aces and respond as in the...

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The Spectator

Grape expectations Auberon Waugh FOR the first time in history, Avery's Grand Christmas offer features as many wines from Chile as from France - in fact, four from each, with...


The Spectator

cio Avery's of Bristol Orchard House, Southfield Road, Nailsea, Bristol BS48 Tel: (01275) 811100 Fax: (01275) 811101 Code Price No. Value White 730 1. Domaine Ste Madelaine...

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Mugged in Clapham Raymond Keene I HAVE lived opposite Clapham Common for much of my life and I too, like Ron Davies and Matthew Parris, can claim to have been mugged there. It...


The Spectator

Mental slugging Jaspistos IN COMPETITION NO. 2058 you were invited to provide a radio commentary, in the breathless style of a boxing or football one, describing a 'lightning'...

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Solution to 1384: Brood

The Spectator

ENIniar o INTI MIIININI ri iffi iiiri EN lig I _< 4 ,_. p 1 1 ; 1 - A <0- $1001- 0-.1 NM MAIL, MIMI di narlarilia rirl A D II 0 G 0 rage on Ron iniongna naming R o...


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A first prize of £30 and a bottle of Graham's Six Grapes Port for the first correct solution opened on 23 November, with two run- ners-up prizes of £20 (or, for UK solvers, the...

No. 2061: Improving on Lear

The Spectator

I've always found Lear's limericks disap- pointing because the last line tamely echoes the first. You are invited to improve on three of them, using opening lines of his and...

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The Spectator

Prince Narcissus Simon Barnes ARROGANCE is the mark of the second- rater; self-certainty that of the true champi- on. This matter has been considered before in this space:...


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Q. I hope that you may be able to help with a relationship comparable to that of Profes- sor Higgins and Eliza Dolittle, except in reverse. My background is rural bourgeois,...