Monday, July 30, 2007

Summer Holiday

Summer Holiday, with Cliff Richard and the Shadows and Una Stubbs and That Girl who Played the Lead who was Never in Anything Else, was the first film I ever saw in the cinema. I thought it was cutting-edge and cool beyond measure and I was madly in love with Cliff. Mind you, I was only five. By the time I was six I had grown out of Cliff, though I still retain a sneaking affection for the title song with all its sixties boppiness.

Leaping forward into the present, where is ex-Prime Minister Tony Blair going for his Summer Holiday? Cliff Richard's mansion in Barbados, that's where.

Now who could have foreseen that one when Cliff and the boys were frolicking around on their London bus?

What's more, Tony and the Freeloaders (how's that for another Sixties band name?) have spent fifteen holidays, whilst Tony was Prime Minister, at the posh homes of businessmen, politicians and pop stars in the Caribbean, the USA and in bits of Europe that aren't Britain.

Now then, Tony, if you're reading this - and I expect you are, in between tennis lessons - did it not occur to you how offensive this was? Prime Minister, quite happy to tell all the British what to do, but didn't find Britain quite good enough to holiday in. Labour Party Prime Minister holidaying at the glamorous homes of rich businessmen in foreign climes. There's something about it that's just rather slimy.

Gordon Brown, new Prime Minister, seems to have picked up on this one. Because if it made me cross, he can be sure there's thousands, probably millions, infuriated by it.

So Gordon's off to some as yet unspecified resort on the South Coast with his wife Sarah and their two boys, and then he's off to Kirkcaldy for the rest of it. And quite right too. Children do not need glamorous locations for their holidays - they need a bucket and spade and new places to explore.

Amusingly, some of Gordon's team have noted this new puritanical atmosphere and are all falling over themselves to have less posh holidays than Gordon. Next year they'll all be camping in the Dales and you won't be able to find a pitch for politicians.

Here's a bit of Caldey Island, three miles from Tenby, that Tony Blair has missed out on. And I'm glad. Serves him right.


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