Polish A-level secured

On January 18, Alistair Lexden asked the government whether it intended to ensure that Polish would continue to be available as an A-level subject.

Tories and tariffs

In the early years of the 20th century British politics were convulsed by Joseph Chamberlain’s campaign for tariff reform which sought to end the long period of Victorian free trade. 

The lucky few

An article in the issue of The Spectator published on 16 April stated that David Cameron had ‘asked a historian friend to find out which Tory leaders have quit at a time of their own choosing and not one determined by the electorate, their party or their health’.


On 19 April The Daily Telegraph reported that the Indian government had for the first time publicly stated that the Kohinoor diamond had been legally acquired by the British Crown. Alistair Lexden supplied some details about its last Indian owner in a letter published in the paper on 22 April.

A question of terminology

On April 21 the Committee stage of the Northern Ireland (Stormont Agreement and Implementation Plan Bill) took place in the Lords. Alistair Lexden supported an amendment designed to bring greater pressure to bear on paramilitary organisations which are still doing grave damage in Northern Ireland.

Greater political stability in Northern Ireland

On 12 April the Northern Ireland (Stormont Agreement and Implementation Plan) Bill had its Second Reading in the Lords. The Bill contains important provisions to improve both security and the system of devolved government in the Province.

Justin Welby's conception at Number 10

On April 9 the news broke that the Archbishop of Canterbury’s biological father was Anthony Montague Browne, private secretary to Winston Churchill at the end of his peace-time premiership in 1955 (and beyond).

Young David and George

In a letter published in The Spectator on 9 April, Alistair Lexden recalled the first stages of David Cameron’s and George Osborne’s political careers.

Awards for outstanding international students

Every year the Council for Independent Education (CIFE), of which Alistair Lexden is President, holds an awards ceremony at the House of Lords to recognise outstanding academic achievement among the students of its nineteen member colleges which specialise in preparing students...

A Prince of Wales at war

A letter written in 1916 by the Prince of Wales (later King Edward VIII) was quoted in The Daily Telegraph on March 30; it shows his discomfort at being awarded the Military Cross, intended to mark “acts of exemplary gallantry”, when he was not allowed to take part in the fighting.