Last year the Beast of Bolsover failed to make his annual contribution to the Queen’s Speech after he found himself preoccupied battling the SNP for his favourite seat. With that fight now won, Dennis Skinner was able to return to form today.
As Black Rod summoned MPs in the House of Commons to hear the Queen’s Speech, Skinner offered up his one-liner. ‘Hands off the BBC,’ the veteran Labour MP cried.
Alas not everyone was so impressed by Skinner’s plea for the Beeb. Perhaps disappointed that Skinner had refrained from a more witty riposte — such as his ‘royal expenses are on the way’ line in 2009 — one comrade could be heard telling him it was not one of his best.