Martin Bright

The unofficial parliamentary sketch writer of the year award

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For the second year running, my politics class at City University has voted for Ann Treneman as the best parliamentary sketch writer (Quentin Letts won in 2008). I like to have an early session on the parliamentary sketch writer's art. This is especially useful for foreign students, to whom the concept of the sketch is alien. Indeed, one of my students this year got quite angry. "I just don't understand this," she said. "It's not funny, it's not clever. I don't like it."

She could be forgiven for being mystified by Simon Hoggart's sketch on Transport Questions this week, which was based on children's classic, The Railway Children, "with twinkle-eyed stationmaster Mr Perks being played by the Lib Dem minister, Norman Baker, and the kindly old gentleman by the secretary of state, Philip Hammond".

I thought Quentin Letts was brutal. Gus O'Donnell got it in the neck on Thursday: "Sir Gus oozed words such as ‘fusion’, ‘leadership tasks’, ‘outcomes’, ‘risk register’, ‘probabilistic’, ‘chair’, ‘proactive’ and ‘task’ (as a transitive verb). The man is riddled with proceduralist Leftism the way my late uncle’s furniture had woodworm. Until this terminal waffler goes, I don’t believe the Cameron Government will manage to rid us of the big state."Ann Treneman was on particularly good form this week, with an excellent column on Prime Minister's Questions. Can't share it with you because of the pay wall I'm afraid. The Times really does make the job of the blogger difficult. But well done Ann.