The cabinet reshuffle was still very much the topic of conversation at Hanover’s summer drinks on Westminster’s College Green last night, as the communications agency’s clients from the corporate world and the political quaffed champers in the sunshine.
The Capitalist heard some members of parliament were more eager than others – Eric Pickles was the first to arrive, half an hour before anyone else.
Some, but not all, of the shuffle comments were positive. “The backbone’s gone from the cabinet now,” commented one newly unseated, and for our purposes unnamed, politician.
Aberdeen Asset Management’s head honcho Martin Gilbert was there, chatting with Hanover founder Charles Lewington. “I’m having a lovely night,” Gilbert told us. “It fact, it’s nice to be here, my daughter went to school just there,” he said, gesturing to Westminster School.
Frances Egan, chief executive of embattled fracking firm Cuadrilla, was milling about chatting to Stephen Burgin of engineering firm Alstom. “It’s unbelievable really, Frances runs a company of some 30 people and he’s probably already dealt with as much strife as we have as a billion dollar firm,” Burgin told The Capitalist afterwards.
He was definitely putting any strife well behind him for the night though. “I only had the intention of staying for an hour but I’ve reconnected with so many diverse people, I’ll probably be the last one to go home,” he added. And why not…