Pudding Norton, Sainsbury's & Maggie

  • 6 May 2004

I've just got back from Pudding Norton Parish Council. What a truly lovely bunch of people. The meeting took place at Fakenham Race Course, which was different! Earlier in the day I went to have a tour of Sainsbury's in North Walsham, where I was shown round by the very enthus...

Egg & Chips With Ann Widdecombe

  • 2 May 2004

Friday was one of those days when a candidate chases his tail. Ann Widdecombe was due at 2pm but she took the wrong turning off the M25 and ended up coming to Cromer via the A1. When she got here I took her to Paston Sixth Form College in North Walsham. Peter Mayne, the very b...

A Quick Recap

  • 30 Apr 2004

Tuesday: My first trip to London for some time and then down to West Sussex to buy some remainder books to sell on the Politico's website.  Wednesday: Spent the morning working in the office before leaving for Manchester for An Evening with Ann Widdecombe. I meant to leave at...

The Week

  • 26 Apr 2004

A HEART STOPPING MOMENT  Took the train to London today and on the way back (standing all the way of course) I started reading Private Eye. I turned the page and there, staring out at me was my name. Gulp. Oh God, I thought, what have I done now. Racking my brain to think o...

A Visit From the Botti

  • 24 Apr 2004

Who? Well, my friend Mark Fox, the candidate in Great Yarmouth informs me that the plural from Bottomley is 'Botti'. Who am I to argue. I collected them from the Furzedown Hotel in Yarmouth after breakfast and while Peter Bottomley went out on the streets of Hoveton with half ...

Radio Four Appearance Traps Lamb

  • 20 Apr 2004

Last Thursday the Today Programme came to Cromer to interview me about the Listeners' Law poll on which I was a judge oiver Christmas. You may remember the so-called Tony Martin law won the day, yet Labour MP Stephen Pound reneged on his promise to introduce whchever law toppe...

Farmers Forum A Success

  • 17 Apr 2004

Yesterday we had a visit from Shadow Agriculture Secretary John Whittingdale. We did an interview on North Norfolk Radio and then went to visit a farm near Saxthorpe run by Peter Seaman, who it is safe to describe as a real Norfolk character! We talked about his business and d...

Fame at Last & Losing Weight

  • 4 Apr 2004

FAME AT LAST FOR THIS BLOG  I didn't realise the nation's national newspaper journalists were avid readers of this Blog, but if you read today's Sunday Times you'll see I was wrong. It reports on my previous posting...  "Is Iain Dale, owner of Politico's, absolutely sure...

Michael Howard Visits

  • 30 Mar 2004

The leader of the Conservative Party began a two-day tour of Norfolk yesterday with a keen eye on the next general election. After visiting Cromer he faced questions from the Eastern Daily Press and took in a whistlestop tour of Norwich Market. ADAM GRETTON and KEIRON PIM repo...

A Response to Austin Mitchell over the Closure of Politico's

  • 21 Mar 2004

Printed in the House Magazine   Austin Mitchell is a man of many talents, but a businessman he ain’t. His attack on my decision to close Politico’s and change the business to an online and mail order business was littered with emotion and the kind of illogical arguments ...

Victim of Crime

  • 17 Mar 2004

BANGED TO RIGHTS  Had a great two hours this lunchtime on the Sandi Toksvig show on LBC. But then my day took a turn for the worse on my way back to Westminster... Here's a press release I've just issued...  Iain Dale, Conservative Parliamentary Spokesman for North Norfo...

The Day After

  • 16 Mar 2004

Quite how I managed to talk about poor Clare Barnes on News 24 last night I don't know. I was given a tip by a North Norfolk friend to think of pleasant things, then you get through it. The press coverage of Clare's death has been astonishing. It's interesting that the media c...

Devastating News

  • 15 Mar 2004

Maybe this isn't the appropriate place to write about this, but I'm sitting here with tears streaming down my face having learnt that one of my former employees has been killed in a sky-diving accident in Australia. Clare Barnes was the daughter of my friend Denis MacShane (La...

Hello From Harrogate

  • 6 Mar 2004

It's 1am and I'm downloading 24 hours worth of email, so I thought I'd type this in the foyer of the Moat House Hotel in Harrogate. This hotel typifies what's wrong with British hotels. It's a specialist conference centre hotel yet you can't even access the internet from your ...

A Complaint About my Dimples

  • 26 Feb 2004

Spent this morning meeting senior council officials at North Norfolk District Council to get briefings on their work. A nice bunch of people with a genuine commitment to public service. This afternoon I met a group of local Cromer crab fishermen. They are very worried about th...

The North Norfolk Conservatives AGM

  • 22 Feb 2004

Spent most of the day catching up on letters and admin after a very hectic few days in the constituency. Had a very good meeting with the NorfolK Chief Constable Andy Hayman on Thursday lunchtime. He's very dynamic and has some very innovative ideas. In the evening I spoke at ...

Speech to North Norfolk Conservatives AGM

  • 20 Feb 2004

  NORTH NORFOLK AGM SPEECH 2004   Ladies and Gentlemen, I always view AGM speeches as a kind of State of the Union address. Where we look back on the year that’s gone by and look forward to the battles to come.   I’d like to start by thanking you all for making ...

What a Candidate is Up Against

  • 17 Feb 2004

Had a hectic day at Politico's yesterday doing several media interviews about moving the shop. I even did one for German TV. Having done a degree in German and lived there I ought to have conducted the interview in German but I chickened out. Pathetic. Then it was off up the A...

Speaking for Ed Vaizey

  • 15 Feb 2004

Just had an extremely busy few days in North Norfolk and last night I was guest speaker at Wantage Conservatives' Valentine's Day dinner. My friend Ed Vaizey is the candidate there. It was a hugely successful event and bearing in mind they had never heard of me, it was great t...

Speech to Wantage Conservatives

  • 12 Feb 2004

      Ladies and Gentlemen, this must be the first time Wantage Conservatives have had two Guardian columnists speaking at a dinner.   I’m not sure this trend should be encouraged any further.   I was delighted to receive your invitation to this Valentine’...