Among Patrick Hennessy’s weekend scoops (the entire Queen’s Speech being one) was news from within 10 Downing Street, where staff have been hiding away the silverware and antiques to make the new regime look less ostentatious. (He also revealed that Steve Hilton has been padding around the building in “stockinged feet”.)
That’s not the only reason some pieces of furniture have suddenly disappeared, however. I’m told that one particular antique – a fine table used by Gordon Brown – was sent to the restorers in recent days because it was covered in dents and black marker pen*.
Co-incidentally (or not) my mole in Number 10 tells me that a certain prime ministerial Jaguar may also need restoration work because of the residual marker pen on its surfaces.
* Apparently the scratches are too deep to be marker; more likely to be a ballpoint.