The spectre at the feast for PM's host

Leading Tory luminaries including David Cameron will attend a glittering party fund-raising reception tonight in one of London’s most magnificent private homes. 

The venue (proudly announced on gilt-edged invitations sent out by party treasurer Lord Fink) is the magnificent 15th-century, 85-room Crosby Hall in Cheyne Walk, Chelsea, on the banks of the Thames.

What a fascinating choice! For the house is owned by the debonair property speculator Christopher Moran, who has been censured several times by the London Stock Exchange for a series of controversial share purchases and who holds the dubious privilege of being the first person in 300 years to be barred for life by Lloyd’s of London for ‘dishonourable conduct’. 

Key player: Christopher Moran with the Queen and Irish President Mary McAleese in 2005

Key player: Christopher Moran with the Queen and Irish President Mary McAleese in 2005

Moran, who will greet the PM when he arrives, is a key Tory player, having masterminded the £30 million sale of Conservative Central Office, the historic backdrop to Margaret Thatcher’s three election victories. Crosby Hall was once owned by Sir Thomas More, who refused to endorse his boss Henry VIII’s divorce from Catherine of Aragon. 

Moran must hope that his warm relationship with the Prime Minister will continue and that he won’t end with the same fate of his Chelsea predecessor . . . who was executed in the Tower of London.

Cathy come home!

Did you spot any EU flags flying last week on Europe Day? I didn’t, either. Meanwhile, Brussels bureaucrats plan to spend £225 million of our money next year promoting the EU’s communication campaigns.

Useless: Cathy Ashton

Yet they have done nothing to improve the reputation of useless Cathy Ashton, the Labour peer appointed first EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs, who wants a 5.8 per cent budget hike for the EU’s so-called diplomatic corps.

Expenses cheat David Laws maintains he got into trouble only because he wanted to keep his homosexuality private. 

The disgraced former Lib Dem Cabinet minister, who misled Commons authorities over his housing arrangements with his secret gay lover and who claimed thousands in ‘excessive rent’, says he was protecting his aged parents, who are devout Catholics, whom he’d never told he was gay.

Since being forced to resign a year ago following the scandal, Laws, 45, has introduced his partner Jamie Lundie to his parents. Far from disapproving, they now regard Lundie as a much-loved member of the family.

Edding for another blunder

A blabber-mouth  senior Tory minister who once suggested Samantha Cameron didn’t vote Tory has blundered again.

Ed Vaizey, a close friend of the PM, is asked on tomorrow’s Radio 4 programme The Jam Generation Takes Power about his views on Scotland or Wales becoming independent. 

Blunder: Culture Minister Ed Vaizey once suggested Samantha Cameron didn't vote Tory
Blunder: Culture Minister Ed Vaizey once suggested Samantha Cameron didn't vote Tory

Blunder: Culture Minister Ed Vaizey once suggested Samantha Cameron didn't vote Tory

He replies: ‘I’d be relaxed about it but I have colleagues in the Tory Party who would die in a ditch to defend the Union.’

Excessively melodramatic language, surely, to describe his boss David Cameron and practically every other Tory Cabinet minister.

Downing Street took less than 24 hours to disassociate itself from higher education minister David Willetts’ daft proposal to create extra places at university for rich students. 

According to the PoliticsHome website, Willetts (nicknamed ‘Two Brains’, although neither of them seems to operate properly) has been suffering problems with his eyesight since undergoing laser treatment to get rid of his beakish glasses. Cruelly, some critics suggest this is the reason his political vision has gone off track.

In the latest official list of MPs’ expenses, Tory member for Hove Mike Weatherley is revealed as having charged 50p for ‘hospitality’. Clearly not a best-of-house seat at Wimbledon or Wembley, considering it would be difficult to find a cup of tea these days for 50p.

Weatherley, though, should be a bit of an expert on the cost of ‘hospitality’, because his estranged wife was exposed last year as a £70-an-hour prostitute.

Vicky Pryce, the vengeful  ex-wife of Chris Huhne, was spotted recently dining in a fashionable London restaurant. The name of the eaterie, according to the eyespyMP blog, was The Bleeding Heart. Oh the irony of it all.

If Alex Salmond secures independence for Scotland, will the £23 billion a year that English taxpayers hand over to provide free prescriptions, free university tuition fees and free social care for the elderly north of the border be re- categorised as ‘international aid’?

Similarly, would it also mean the English can stop changing the clocks twice a year — a pointless gesture simply to keep the Scots happy?

The comments below have been moderated in advance.

The views expressed in the contents above are those of our users and do not necessarily reflect the views of MailOnline.

We are no longer accepting comments on this article.

Who is this week's top commenter? Find out now