The obedient hackery of the legendarily foul mouthed Paul Dacre has made a remarkable discovery: “Did Maggie know her closest aide was preying on under-age boys?” gasps the headline, as the paper finally discovers what Zelo Street readers have known for some time. They have caught up, finally, with Peter Morrison, former MP for Chester, until his enforced “retirement” in 1992.
Political career ended right here (blue plaque not yet installed)
Morrison, readers are told, “was the first backbencher to urge Mrs Thatcher to stand for the party leadership. The Morrisons were so intimate with Mrs T that women in the family even gave her fashion tips. And over the years, no political colleague was more close to her than Peter ... The red-haired Old Etonian with an Oxford law degree soon climbed the slippery Westminster ladder with her help”.
Yes? Yes yes? Yes yes yes? “Yet despite a smooth ride to the top and a knighthood in 1988, many colleagues were surprised when Mrs Thatcher chose Morrison as her Parliamentary Private Secretary (PPS) in 1990 ... For, by then, rumours were spreading about bachelor Morrison’s unorthodox private life: his love of the bottle and his dangerous sexual appetite for young men”.
Nothing gets past the Mail, does it? There is even an appearance from Simon “Enoch was right” Heffer, who tells “A very senior person in the party said that Peter had been discovered by police kerb-crawling for rent boys in Sussex Gardens, London. There was serious concern about his private life among those who surrounded Mrs Thatcher”. Edwina Currie told us about that ages ago.
And one thing the Mail wants us to know: whatever Morrison did, Mrs T did not, repeat did not, repeat DID NOT know about it. Heffer again: “They should have had a word in her ear. I don’t believe they ever did. They treated her as if she was Queen Victoria”. Nor, it seems, do they want to credit the late Simon Hoggart with revealing the reason for Morrison’s “retirement” in his Guardian column.
Hoggart was told “After the 1987 general election, around 1990, I attended a meeting of Chester Labour party where we were informed by the agent, Christine Russell, that Peter Morrison would not be standing in 1992. He had been caught in the toilets at Crewe station with a 15-year-old boy. A deal was struck between Labour, the local Tories, the local press and the police that if he stood down at the next election the matter would go no further” by the former head of Chester Trades Council.
Moreover, he included the item in his diary for 16 November 2012. But only now, with stories of a paedophile ring operating around Westminster, will the Mail tell its readers (note that at least one of its pundits knew what Morrison was up to at the time). And, all the time, remember, Mrs T knew nothing.
Expect more of this creative and protective retelling of history from the Mail.