Sunday, 21 September 2008

Gordon has them rolling in the aisles

It was a plastic marquee in the centre of Manchester but for a few hours it became a corner of Wales.

"Croeso i Gymru" beamed Neil Kinnock as Gordon Brown and his wife Sarah arrived for Welsh Night at the Labour conference.

The PM gave a confident, relaxed, witty performance that delighted his audience. Yes, he really did. "Why can't he do that all the time?" asked a frustrated Minister afterwards.

You'll have to take my word for it, as we were ordered to turn off our cameras after filming his arrival. Perhaps he was more relaxed because he wasn't being filmed.

He told a couple of funny stories, including one about Amy Winehouse explaining how her husband had a lot in common with Nelson Mandela that will probably become part of his staple anecdote regime.

Party leaders attend dozens of these receptions during conference weeks so there is an element of repetition about the speeches.

That must be the explanation for his list of Labour stalwarts. "I thank all the MEPs and MPs, all the councillors....." He was so grateful he thanked the same list twice.

Those Welsh Assembly Members present were far too polite to point out the obvious omission.....

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