Edinburgh Fringe Diary - Sunday 11 August

  • 11 Aug 2019

It's my final day in Edinburgh and it was a very early start to head down to the BBC in Edinburgh to do the paper review on Paddy O'Connell's Broadcasting House show. It finished at 10 and I got back to my digs at 10.10 to record this week's FOR THE MANY PODCAST with Jacqui Sm...

Edinburgh Fringe Diary - Saturday 10 August

  • 10 Aug 2019

I was going to go out to a bar to watch West Ham get slaughtered by Manchester City, but then I discovered it could watch it via the BT Sport website on my laptop. Well that worked out well. We lost 5-0. This has almost become a tradition on the opening day of the season.  ...

Edinburgh Fringe Diary - Friday 9 August

  • 10 Aug 2019

Friday was such a manic day I was too knackered to write this last night, so here goes. Better late than never. It absolutely hurled it down all morning. I've never seen rain like it. It carried on, off and on, during the rest of the day. Had to happen one day, I suppose. ...

Edinburgh Fringe Diary: Thursday 8 August

  • 8 Aug 2019

No lie-in today either. I was up at 8.30am because I had to write a column for the Evening Standard and also my weekly ConservativeHome column. I finished just in time to leave for an In Conversation event with Scottish comedian Janey Godley all the way over in George Street. ...

Edinburgh Fringe Diary: Wednesday 7 August

  • 8 Aug 2019

A rather frustrating morning. I wrote my EDP column and then jumped into a cab to go to see my friend Sarah Southern perform her TENTATIVELY TORY show. The whole of Edinburgh seemed to be gridlocked. After forty minutes we'd had to avoid two sets of gridlock and ended back...

Edinburgh Fringe Diary: Tuesday 6 August

  • 7 Aug 2019

Up early for a radio panel with Mark Dolan, Christopher Biggins and Shapi Korsandi, then a quick visit to the Apple Store to buy a battery pack. They didn't have the one I wanted, natch. Someone texted me to say the Sturgeon interview was playing big in the Scottish papers and...

Edinburgh Fringe Diary: Monday

  • 6 Aug 2019

Twelve shows down, twelve to go. Today is a bank holiday in Scotland and Edinburgh was teeming with people enjoying both the Fringe and the good weather. I have to admit I got up late today but then did a bit of prep for the Nicola Sturgeon interview. At noon I got a ca...

Edinburgh Fringe Diary: Sunday

  • 5 Aug 2019

This was one of those days when (almost) everything went right and I can go to bed happy. Mind you, it didn't start off that way. I got up earlier than I would have liked to record this week's For the Many podcast with Jacqui Smith. We recorded about 80 minutes before I...

Edinburgh Fringe Diary: Saturday

  • 3 Aug 2019

It's weird to think that it's only Saturday but I have now hosted one third of the shows in the entire 24 show Edinburgh run. It hardly seems possible, but it's true. I had a bit of a lie-in this morning and also read some of Kirsty Wark's new book THE HOUSE BY THE LOCH...

Edinburgh Fringe Diary: Friday

  • 3 Aug 2019

I had one of the best night's sleep I've had in months and was only awoken by the alarm ringing. I could have happily stayed in bed all morning, but I was booked to appear on the Radio Scotland morning show with Stephen Jardine at 10am to plug the show. I decided to walk down ...

Edinburgh Fringe Diary: Thursday

  • 2 Aug 2019

I've just won the Big Gay Slam. No, not some deviant orgiastic competition, but... well you'll have to read to the end. I think it's called reeling you in. I had a very uneventful morning, mainly because I had to write my EDP and ConservativeHome columns, as well as put the...

Edinburgh Fringe Diary: Wednesday

  • 31 Jul 2019

I don't usually get nervous about much nowadays. I mean it's not as if I'm not used to being on a stage talking in front of an audience, but somehow appearing at the Edinburgh Fringe is somewhat different. I suppose I'm in fear of falling on my face and going back to London wi...

Edinburgh Fringe Diary: Tuesday

  • 30 Jul 2019

I know now that whenever I go on a trip I usually incur a series of mini disasters along the way. Today was no different. I had arranged for my local MP in Norfolk, Keith Simpson, to provide a taxi service and pick me up at 8am to take me to Norwich International Airport - the...

Announcing my new Book: Why Can't We All Just Get Along

  • 30 Jul 2019

I'm really excited to tell you that today HarperCollins is announcing they have signed me up to write a new book, for publication in June 2020. It's called WHY CAN'T WE ALL JUST GET ALONG: HOW TO DISAGREE WITHOUT LOSING FRIENDS. It's all about the decline in public discourse, ...

How Boris Really Became Prime Minister - A Counterfactual

  • 24 Jul 2019

Duncan Brack and I have published three books of counterfactual essays over the last 15 years or so. Prime Minister Portillo And Other Things That Never Happened was the first, published in 2003. Prime Minister Boris And Other Things That Never Happened followed in 2016, with ...

Keith Simpson's Summer 2019 Reading List

  • 10 Jul 2019

By Keith Simpson MP We live in a time without precedent with all the old political certainties challenged and the reputation of politicians at an all time low.  Exhausted by Brexit and the failure to deliver MPs are nervous and skittish with the Conservatives electing a new...

A Tribute to Ernie Horth

  • 26 Jun 2019

Today I should be attending the funeral of Ernie Horth in Norwich. And I feel incredibly guilty that I won't be there to pay tribute to someone who to everyone involved in Norwich Conservatives in the 1980s and 1990s was an absolute legend. Pic: From left to right - Joa...

CNNTalk Comes to an End - It's Been a Blast

  • 23 Jun 2019

Above: The final CNNTalk with the core team 24/6/19 In May 2017 CNN International started a show called CNNTalk. It started out as a once a week panel show with Max Foster presenting, with me, Ayesha Hazarika and Liam Halligan as the panelists. We'd discuss one subject ...

Mark Field & the Greenpeace Protester: What I Really Think

  • 21 Jun 2019

I have to say Good Morning Britain didn't exactly do me any favours this morning when they put out a 30 second clip which people have interpreted as defending the actions of Mark Field at the Mansion House dinner last night. Twitter has gone mental saying how dare I say what I...