I have it on good authority that John Woodcock, one of Brown’s two spokesmen, is to quit; the move could come soon.
Apparently he wants to stand at the next general election as candidate for Barrow and Furness, John Hutton’s seat. The latter resigned as defence secretary amid the reshuffle excitement of two weeks ago. Woodcock used to be Hutton’s special adviser.
He will spend some time backstage at 10 Downing Street before he starts campaigning later in the year.
Unfortunately for Woodcock, his chances of preserving the seat are far from assured given that Hutton’s majority is relatively slim. Then again, the life expectancy of a Brown adviser isn’t exactly infinite these days.
Woodcock and Michael Dugher became Brown’s joint spokesmen after Damian McBride took a back seat last autumn.