Daily Archives: July 15, 2011

Kiran Stacey

Hard on the heels of the lists of the prime minister’s meetings with media executives since last year’s election comes a similar list from Nick Clegg.

It shows how close he too was to News International, attending the company’s summer party and meeting Rebekah Brooks and James Harding (the Times’ editor) twice, as well as James Murdoch and Dominic Mohan, the editor of the Sun.

But he is much closer to the Independent, meeting their editor, Simon Kelner, and owner, Evgeny Lebedev, three times each.

Here is the full list: Read more

Kiran Stacey

The lists are out. We now know everyone who has been to Chequers since the election, and separately, every media figure the prime minister has met in that time.

Of interest:

  • James Murdoch has stayed at Chequers recently, and Rebekah Brooks stayed twice last year. (Incidentally, so has the Qatari prime minister – the only foreign dignitary to do so.)
  • We know that Cameron met Brooks over Christmas socially, but apparently there was another meeting in December – although we are not given details of where or when.
  • Rupert Murdoch was the first media figure to talk to Cameron after the election – but we already knew that.
  • Six out of Cameron’s first ten media meetings after winning the election were with people News International.

Of interest, but not mentioned in these lists: Andy Coulson stayed at Chequers in March, two months after quitting Number 10.

Here are the full details:

 Read more

Kiran Stacey

Grant Shapps, the housing minister, announced on Thursday that social housing providers will build 170,000 new affordable homes over the next four years, 20,000 more than expected and a lot more than some doomsayers warned would be possible.

Unsurprisingly, the communities department hailed this as a great triumph, but there remain serious questions about whether there will be enough subsidised homes for everyone who needs one.

So what should we celebrate, and what is there to worry about in Thursday’s announcement? Read more