John Gibson: Yes, Tony suited me to a tea

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I LIKED Tony Benn. Liked him a lot. It was easy to warm to Anthony Wedgwood Benn when we met for a one-to-one chat in the Roxburghe.

Just him, me, his trusty teapot, the kettle he plugs into his hotel room, a china mug and 25 teabags. It was October and I wrote then that it had been my pleasantest, jolliest interview that year.

I’m recalling it now from the Gibpress File, an occasional series, because Tony, at 87, is hanging up his tape recorder (never used it with me), planning to donate his vast diaries to competing institutions.

His father was the Liberal member for Leith in 1922-23 and fought for the port, campaigning against the rape and pillage of it by Edinburgh.

Be happy in your dotage, Tony. You and your teapot. He has just sold his £4 million four-storey Regency property in London and moved into a warden-controlled flat.

Rats run amok

A big run on cheese in the traps. Between 2007 and last year, Edinburgh City Council received 16,608 reports relating to rats and mice.

A rat epidemic here four years ago was blamed on overflowing bins and, the way the council is dealing with bins today, confirms another rodent plague is more than probable.

Mind you, we’ve ways to go before we can rival Mumbai’s 88 million. For the record, the Capital has the second highest vermin problem in Scotland. Glasgow’s top, you’d automatically believe.

Hibernian, by the way, currently are second in Scottish Premier League.