Featured articles


James Forsyth

Boris’s bunker: the PM’s defensive strategy

When Boris Johnson first became Prime Minister, he did not have a majority in parliament. Still, he didn’t worry too much about making friends with Tory MPs. He decided to work from the outside in, using his public popularity to pressure colleagues. A snap election was looming: backing him, he said, was their best hope

Revealed: how the NHS waiting list will hit 9.2 million

Before the pandemic hit, NHS England waiting lists were at a record high of 4.4 million. Three lockdowns later, they’ve risen to six million: an unacceptable figure for a Tory government which has spent years trying to rebrand itself as the ‘party of the NHS’. Boris Johnson’s decision to break his manifesto pledge and raise

How I’d write your perfect speech

For many of our clients we are a dirty secret. Phone calls regularly begin with variants of: ‘Can you guarantee discretion?’ But there’s not a dealer, pimp or even a Botox clinic in sight. We write speeches. Traditional taboos are fast disappearing. Personal trainers, moisturising creams and therapists are shared between friends. It is socially

Anti-police spin is tearing the force apart

The police watchdog, the IOPC, has recently released a report into social media conversations between officers — and it makes for uncomfortable reading. Some of the comments are appalling, full of arrogance, racism and misogyny. But as we get ready to shower disdain on serving officers once again, I’d like to raise the question: what

Bring back communion wine

The Church of England has always been clever at producing theology to suit itself. If we don’t start protesting, we may never get communion wine back again. Too many risk-averse clergy have discovered how efficient, hygienic and cheap it is just to give us a wafer each. They explain it away by reminding us that

Notes on...

The controversial side of carp fishing

All anglers are obsessive, but carp fishers are the most single-minded of all. They think nothing of spending weeks on the banks of a muddy lake or gravel pit, lines and breath baited, waiting for a bite. Ask an aficionado what motivates him and he’ll speak — with an intensity that sounds a lot like