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Anorak | Here Be Monsters

Here Be Monsters

by | 29th, September 2003

‘LLOYD Scott, the former fireman who completed one of the world’s slowest ever marathons when he trudged round London in a 200lb diving suit, is at it again.

Blair’s popularity takes a dive

While 1,200 runners from 14 countries lined up in Fort Augustus for the start of a 26-mile run around Loch Ness yesterday, Mr Scott prepared to complete the course underwater.

The Times has a picture of the 41-year-old entering the murky depths of the loch – a fitting metaphor perhaps for the journey just about to be undertaken by Prime Minister Tony Blair.

A couple of years ago, Blair would have felt confident in his ability to complete a marathon running on top of the water of Loch Ness.

But this week he faces a Labour Party conference every bit as inhospitable as the freezing waters of Scotland’s largest body of water.

The one piece of good news for the embattled Prime Minister is that he will not face a damaging vote on Iraq – the Loch Ness monster of the conference.

The Guardian says Blair has managed to sidestep a public row over Iraq in favour of emergency debates about the NHS, employment rights and pensions.

“It will guarantee the trade unions their chance to inflict defeats on the Government on domestic issues,” it says, “but, embarrassing as this will be, Blair knows that a resounding defeat on Iraq would have echoed round the world.”

Less good news is the poll in the same paper showing the Tories leading Labour by eight percentage points in 58 key marginal constituencies.

However, even with those figures, Blair is on course for a third term victory, probably with a majority of 100 seats or more.

“Five more years, five more years,” as they don’t say in Gordon Brown’s flat in 10 Downing Street.’



Posted: 29th, September 2003 | In: Broadsheets Comment | Follow the Comments on our RSS feed: RSS 2.0 | TrackBack | Permalink