Steerpike rss

Steerpike is The Spectator’s gossip columnist, serving up the latest tittle tattle from London and beyond. Email tips to


27 July 2013

Is there treachery at the top of Ukip? Westminster has been buzzing with the rumour that party treasurer Stuart Wheeler has laid money on the Conservatives to win an overall… Read more


13 July 2013

The wine waiters at Claridges are taking a keen interest in the investigation into malpractice in Falkirk. And they’re hoping that Unite will be fully exonerated. Len McCluskey likes to… Read more


29 June 2013

The PM was keeping his enemies close at a Tory fundraiser last week at Old Billingsgate Market. Dave exchanged uneasy smiles with his deadliest rival, Boris, who was seated on… Read more

Steerpike: The Lib Dems’ free school fight, Dignitas on Scotland, and more

15 June 2013

Some politicians don’t read their own manifestos. And some don’t even read the names of their own parties. When it comes to academy schools, the Lib Dems are struggling to… Read more

Steerpike: Murdoch ruined Dave’s holiday

1 June 2013

  So did Dave enjoy his brief break in Ibiza? Not if Rupert Murdoch could help it. Rupe declared on Twitter that the Woolwich atrocity would be a personal test of Cameron’s… Read more

Steerpike: Begging with the archbishop, dining with rebels, and playing Shakespeare

18 May 2013

Begging bowls are out at Canterbury cathedral. Anglicanism’s principal shrine is in danger of toppling over if its custodians can’t raise an emergency fund of £17.8 million needed to shore up… Read more

Steerpike: Unpopular Populus, and the call of the Boris

4 May 2013

It’s been a tricky few days for Populus, the ultra-cool research organisation. Once the Tories’ favourite pollster, Populus has long enjoyed the patronage of Fleet Street’s most prestigious client, the… Read more


20 April 2013

Labour activists are quietly amused that Mrs Thatcher’s death may lead to a library being built in her honour. ‘Tricky one for the Tories,’ says a top Labour figure. ‘Presumably David Cameron… Read more


6 April 2013

Chat, chat, chat. Every member of the Cabinet enjoys a good old chin-wag with their ministerial driver. Except one. Dave appears to have taken a vow of silence. For three years… Read more


23 March 2013

Westminster’s top amateur prize-fighter, Eric Joyce, may face assault charges after his latest unscheduled bout in the House of Commons. The Falkirk MP had to be restrained last week after… Read more

Bloomberg will buy the Financial Times — but only if it jettisons The Economist

9 March 2013

How much would you stump up for the Economist? Most of us would draw the line at a fiver, but I’m told that Mike Bloomberg, mayor of New York, is drawing… Read more


23 February 2013

Dave’s a listener. He listens to women in particular. That’s the sub-text of his recent disclosure that Sam keeps urging him to promote more women to the Cabinet. Yet Dave’s… Read more


9 February 2013

Stanley Johnson, replete with energy and charming as ever, is touring the country looking for a safe Tory berth to ease himself into at the next election.No takers so far, I’m… Read more

Downing Street’s departures, and Martin Ivens’ redemption

26 January 2013

More turmoil at No. 10, I hear. ‘Cameron’s power network is disintegrating,’ gloated an insider as news broke that two aides close to the cabinet secretary, Jeremy Heywood, are to… Read more

Nick Clegg’s pallor, Murdoch’s revenge, and Lord Strathclyde’s champagne

12 January 2013

Has Nick Clegg seen a ghost? The pallor of the Lib Dem leader continues to excite comment in Westminster. At Monday’s half-time presentation by the coalition, he was looking as… Read more

Tony Hall’s successor, organic government and the great Lib Dem shale plot

8 December 2012

Rending of raiment and gnashing of teeth at the Guardian. I’m told that the paper’s veteran editor, Alan Rusbridger, is tipped to take over at the Royal Opera House once… Read more

Leveson’s tour of Australia, Lynton Crosby’s uneasy return and the anger of Ben Fogle

24 November 2012

Brian Leveson’s epic inquiry into press malpractice is finally drawing to a close. In Britain, the courtroom saga has enjoyed a tiny daytime TV audience of tagged convicts, stoned job-seekers,… Read more

The real master of No.10, leaks at the Wolseley and Archbishop Justin

10 November 2012

Hats off to Sir Jeremy Heywood. The Cabinet Secretary’s bid to delete himself from everyone’s Christmas card list is proving a great success. Ministers were not amused by Sue Cameron’s… Read more

Has someone been skimming the plate at Westminster Cathedral? Photo: Ralph Morse//Time Life Pictures/Getty Images

Catholic plates, Sir Stuart’s boob job and tight-lipped Lynton

20 October 2012

Many are the mysteries of the Catholic Church. The latest concerns the takings at Westminster Cathedral, which have suddenly soared by thousands of pounds a week. The priests, who for… Read more

Goodbye to Craig Dre and the legend of Dave’s rudeness

6 October 2012

Word reaches me that Dave may be about to lose his third spin doctor in a row. First Andy Coulson left to spend more time with his Fingertip Guide to… Read more

Telling Tales

22 September 2012

What could possibly go wrong when you lock 10,000 political hacks and flacks in a hotel for 96 hours and let lobbyists pick up the tab? Well that’s party conference for… Read more