Open government comes to the back yard of Number 10

INSPIRED by the success of the Jubilee celebrations perhaps, The National Trust yesterday announced that the garden of 10 Downing Street will be among the 200 venues involved in the Open Garden Squares Weekend taking place this Saturday.

The L-shaped plot, shared by both 10 and 11 Downing Street, will host 25 lucky ticket holders who were selected by lot.

The garden, which boasts extravagant flowerbeds, was made available for the annual event after the National Trust sought approval from David Cameron to use the area.

The Prime Minister, after welcoming the event into his back garden, expressed his excitement at the upcoming occasion and deemed the scheme a “fantastic initiative”.

A press spokesman dismissed the suggestion there could be a likelihood of troublemaking within the garden from possible opponents to Cameron’s government.

Number 10 Downing Street has said normal safety measures will remain in place for the day, but refused to disclose further details.

The garden has previously been the backdrop for other informal occasions, including the press launch announcing the coalition in May 2011 and a barbecue held by the Camerons and Obamas the same month.

Cameron’s flowerbeds are becoming something of a fixture in media appearances – the PM was on Sunday interviewed in the back garden for the Andrew Marr show.

The backyard, dominated by a half-acre lawn, will join other high-profile communal gardens located within 25 London boroughs in the Open Garden Squares Weekend, such as The Regent’s Park Allotment Garden and The Royal College of Physicians’ Medicinal Garden.

Let’s hope the weather is a little better than last weekend, otherwise some might be seeking a little shelter.

FOOTBALL fans in the City will have a busy summer as two major events head towards their climax: the crisis in the Eurozone and UEFA’s Euro 2012 tournament. The enterprising folks at Ladbrokes are offering a series of bets on both events. With Spain favourites to win the football, the bookmakers are offering a mere 3/1 that the winning country will announce its withdrawal from the euro this year. Pessimists may prefer the 50/1 on offer for the currency to be disbanded by the time the tournament finishes on 1 July. Ladbrokes said: “The odds suggest Spain’s footballers will reign supreme while their banks crumble.”