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PARTY STALWART TEBBIT HAPPY TO STICK HIS NECK OUT FOR THE CITY

TO ONE of the City&rsquo;s favourite haunts, Boisdale of Bishopsgate, last night for a special members&rsquo; game dinner hosted by Lord Tebbit, staunch Thatcherite and eternal bearer of the beacon of those on the right of politics.<br /><br />Tebbit, as is his wont, was happy to wax lyrical about the issues facing the Tories in the run-up to the election, and the City will be happy to hear that Boris Johnson isn&rsquo;t the only one on their side.<br /><br />&ldquo;There is a degree of embarrassment in the party about the problems in the banking industry, but it is important that we make the City aware that we regard them as a valuable part of the economy and that we work with them,&rdquo; he said.<br /><br />Meanwhile, he reckons David Cameron is Britain&rsquo;s version of Barack Obama.<br /><br />&ldquo;He&rsquo;s very well-educated, very persuasive, very smart, good at public relations and a good speaker,&rdquo; he says, dancing along the precipice of damning with faint praise.<br /><br />&ldquo;But he hasn&rsquo;t had much experience of executive responsibility, and it remains to be seen how he will cope in a role he&rsquo;s not been used to before. We can only hope.&rdquo;<br /><br /><strong>LITERARY VISION</strong><br />While we&rsquo;re on the subject of the former senior minister, Tebbit seems to have found a new vocation in life &ndash; as a writer. He&rsquo;s recently published a cookery book dedicated to game recipes, &ldquo;The Game Cook&rdquo;, from which two recipes were served at the dinner last night (rabbit terrine with Armagnac prunes and Highland pheasant with haggis and apricots &ndash; and mighty delicious they were, too).<br /><br />He&rsquo;s also currently putting the final touches to a children&rsquo;s fiction book about a young paraplegic boy and his trusty black Labrador, though he&rsquo;s yet to find a publisher for the tome.<br /><br />But it seems the literary outburst will be short lived.<br /><br />&ldquo;I don&rsquo;t have any further plans at the moment,&rdquo; he tells me. &ldquo;Perhaps I ought to write a party manifesto instead&hellip;&rdquo; Will the man&rsquo;s political ambition never die?<br /><br /><strong>ON THE JUICE</strong><br />The City has always taken pride in its knowledge of fine wines, so congratulations to De Beers&rsquo; Howard Davies and his team, who won a &ldquo;Wine and Wisdom&rdquo; competition run by restaurant Vivat Bacchus last night.<br /><br />Almost 250 budding connoisseurs had entered the contest, including teams from PricewaterhouseCoopers, Deloitte and law firm Lovells, who had to undergo wine knowledge and trivia quizzes and a strenuous wine-tasting session (poor dears).<br /><br />De Beers took home a &pound;600 voucher for a meal at Vivat, a donation of &pound;2,500 to a charity of their choice, and an engraved trophy. Certainly one to display prominently in the office to impress potential future clients.<br /><br /><strong>FREE WHEELING</strong><br />If anyone in the City has been wondering this week why Simon Bragg, the chief executive of Oriel Securities, has adopted a John Wayne swagger over the past week, fear not.<br /><br />Bragg led around 30 of his staff last Sunday on a 110km cycle ride from Oriel College in Oxford to the Oriel offices in the City, in aid of the firm&rsquo;s local charity the Blackfriars Settlement.<br /><br />Quite some achievement, it&rsquo;s got to be said &ndash; though at least the group was sponsored by pub group Young&rsquo;s, which opened up its boozer in Paternoster Square specially for the intrepid cyclists.<br /><br /><strong>SMOOTH SAILING</strong><br />Over yet again to Carphone Warehouse tycoon Charles Dunstone&rsquo;s impending nuptials to PR executive Celia Gordon Shute, which, The Capitalist revealed yesterday, will see crooner Jools Holland performing to a star-studded marquee in the Inner Temple Garden on Embankment.<br /><br />I hear the lovestruck pair will be heading off for a relaxing three-week honeymoon, which will probably seem like paradise after all the legwork Dunstone has been putting in, both on the exhausting main event and on the group&rsquo;s second quarter trading statement yesterday.<br /><br />Details are top-secret ahead of the big day &ndash; other than the fact that there won&rsquo;t be sight nor sound of Dunstone&rsquo;s beloved yacht, for which the bride doesn&rsquo;t exactly share his unbridled passion&hellip;<br /><br /><strong>FILM BUFF</strong><br />If you&rsquo;ve not yet had a read of the serialisation of Andrew Ross Sorkin&rsquo;s &ldquo;Too Big to Fail&rdquo; book in the new edition of Vanity Fair, it&rsquo;s worth a gander simply for the insight into Lloyd Blankfein, the immaculate top dog at Goldman Sachs.<br /><br />Apparently, Blankfein, with &ldquo;top shirt button undone and tie slightly askew&rdquo; (heavens) rang up Jamie Dimon soon after the collapse of Lehman Brothers to complain about rumour-mongering about his bank at Dimon&rsquo;s JP Morgan &ndash; and proceeded to quote Tom Cruise in A Few Good Men, asking: &ldquo;Did you order the Code Red?&rdquo;.<br /><br />The Capitalist is sure Dimon was positively quaking in his boots.