Coffee House

Change at Number 10

31 October 2012

10:38 AM

31 October 2012

10:38 AM

Gabby Bertin is one of David Cameron’s long-marchers; she has been with him since he won the leadership in 2005. Bertin has acted as his political spokeswoman for the last seven years, pushing the Cameron message and dealing calmly with the inevitable crises and mishaps.

Few people know what Cameron thinks as well as Bertin does and are as prepared as her to tell him when he is going wrong. Cameron, for his part, values Bertin’s ability to, in his words, ‘see round corners.’ But in a fortnight’s time, she goes off on six months maternity leave.


I understand that Susie Squire, currently running the press operation at CCHQ, will step into Bertin’s shoes. Squire, who was previously IDS’s special adviser, is respected in the party and by the press which should ease the transition. Alan Sendorek, who is becoming an increasingly important figure in Number 10, will also be there to provide continuity.

Squire was picked for the CCHQ job by Craig Oliver, the Prime Minister’s director of communications who is already beginning to turn his attention to assembling a Tory communications team for the 2015 campaign. He admired the way in which she carried home the coalition message on welfare and has been pivotal in her moving into Number 10.

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Show comments
  • Blah

    Didn’t know DC was the tallest member of the cast of ‘The Thick Of It’.

  • Scott

    Is Craig Oliver part of the problem or the solution?


    “Gabby Bertin is one of David Cameron’s long-marchers”

    Was that Freudian slip, in which case, your sub-concious should have capitalised L & M, or are you and your ilk now blatantly advertising the fact Tory Party has joined in the route march of Gramsci’s game plan? Whichever, your language should be noted by those of conservative persuasion who understand the implications, should any still bother to read the Spectator.

  • Heartless etc

    Why is the girl on the right pointing at the ground? – head so high in the clouds he can’t come down to earth?

    • Heartless etc.,

      Just realised – she’s a nurse.

  • NeilMc1

    She’s been with him for seven years and been part of the disaster. Losing an unlosable election and now being beasted by Miliband and Balls. How bad do you have to be to get fired at CCHQ?

    • munchkinette

      Excellent – on the money NeilMc1. Whenever my MP (Grieve – by name and nature) upbriads me for my right wing views (“we’re constrained by the terms of coalition) I simply tell him that the disgrace of the conservatives was missing a bl**dy open goal in 2010.

  • Vulture

    Well, since Cameron’s PR operation has been an unmitigated disaster, perhaps she shoudl stay on maternity leave permanantly.

    It’s odd that Cameron himself is a PR man – mind you, look what happened to Carlton TV the organisation for which he spun. (It went down the tubes – just like his Govt is doing)

    I suppose the old PR adage about turds and polishing applies.

    • HooksLaw

      Did Carlon go down the tubes?

      It merged with Granada to form ITV, it was the inevitable consequence of the on going merger of the regional ITV companies into one.

      Your ignorance is endless. When do you go for a spittle transfusion.

      • Vulture

        Hookie: No, it was taken over by Granada because it was doing so badly. Ask anyone in the Media if you don’t believe me – Cameron was useless at PR as he is useless at everything he touches. Spiteful, petulant and out of touch are the terms used about him. Then he transferred his talents to politics…and the rest, as they say, is history.

        • Rhoda Klapp

          The mere fact that so many of us remember it as going down the tubes is an indication of the effectiveness of its PR.