Another day, another story about Whitehall cats to distract the nation from the hellfire of British politics and the death of social democracy as we know it.
This week, it’s Nick Clegg’s turn to weigh in on the greatest silly season-turned-perennial story of our times. He revealed, during an interview on Absolute radio, that there is a special security entrance for cats in Downing Street.
The cats in question are No 10’s Larry, and the Foreign Office cat Palmerston, who often clash with one another when prowling their neighbouring patches of Whitehall territory.
Clegg explained that Downing Street’s layout is basically dictated by the presence of these two cats:
“There’s lots of crowded stairs and cluttered offices, and then there was this funny little door that you had to kind of speak to someone on a microphone (about) to get from one part of the building to the other.
“I think actually, increasingly, that was used not for security, but to keep the cats out from one end of the building to another.
“Totally British. The cats come first.”
Your mole hears from government sources that while Larry and Palmerston are feuding, the Treasury cat Gladstone is burnishing his credentials as Whitehall’s most efficient mouser. Apparently he has the highest tally since moving in. But perhaps he will need his own secure entrance soon too, as Palmerston was recently caught breaking into the Treasury.
A little envious, your mole is lobbying its editor for its own secure burrow into NS Towers.