Local Tory “Foot Soldiers” (dotty as the church stalwarts in The Vicar of Dibley) and councillors (Toilet Seats) must be waiting anxiously for publication of the “Secret Diaries” on 24 September to see whether their hard work for the party has “earned” them a name check.
If they have been ignored this time, all is not lost because:
Sasha Swire has plenty more embarrassing diaries to come
David Sanderson, Arts Correspondent www.thetimes.co.uk
Westminster, take a deep breath: Sasha Swire has years of diary entries still to be published.
With the dust refusing to settle after the serialisation of Lady Swire’s diaries, it can be revealed that there is plenty more where that came from.
The wife of the former Conservative minister Sir Hugo Swire has already embarrassed swathes of the body politic with her indiscretion-heavy memoir, which is due to be published next week.
Diary of an MP’s Wife: Inside and Outside Power, which was serialised in The Times, revealed the sex-laden jokes and drinking habits of David Cameron as well as insights into the behaviour and relationships of those surrounding him during his years in power.
Mr Cameron acknowledged this week that revelations about his behaviour in private being “splashed all over the place” were embarrassing.
He insisted, however, that he could not remember walking behind Lady Swire on a coastal walk and telling her: “The scent you are wearing is affecting my pheromones. It makes me want to grab you and push you into the bushes and give you one.”
Lady Swire’s literary agent, Caroline Dawnay, confirmed yesterday that more embarrassing details about Britain’s ruling classes could lie ahead.
“She has diaries from before and after,” Ms Dawnay said. “But she has not decided whether to publish them. She will definitely write something brilliant again though.”
The published diary begins on May 12, 2010, days after the general election, which had resulted in a hung parliament, as Mr Cameron and Nick Clegg, then the leader of the Liberal Democrats, put together their coalition government.
The next day Sir Hugo, an Old Etonian like Mr Cameron and Boris Johnson, is appointed a minister in the Northern Ireland Office. He later becomes a minister in the Foreign Office. The memoir ends in late 2019 after Sir Hugo’s retirement as an MP.
Lady Swire confesses to being “a secret journal writer since childhood”. She says in the preface to her forthcoming memoir that she had never intended to publish them but after her husband’s retirement she had “somewhat foolishly” shown Ms Dawnay extracts and was swiftly “swept up into a publishing tornado”.
While Sir Hugo’s years in government only began in 2010, he was in the Conservative inner circles for many years beforehand.
The former Sotheby’s director was elected to parliament in 2001 and two years later became an opposition whip. In 2004 he was promoted to shadow culture minister, a position he lost in 2007 after a suggestion that the Conservatives would scrap the policy of free entry to the national museums.
Lady Swire was his part-time political researcher during the period.