Ready, Steady, Go

GORDON BROWN and David Cameron hit the campaign trail yesterday, after the Prime Minister announced an election on 6 May.

Brown kicked off what aides called a “kitchens and canteens” campaign by visiting shop workers at a Rochester branch of Wm Morrison.

And Cameron tried to prove his party’s commitment to the NHS by visiting a Birmingham hospital.

Liberal Democrat leader Nick Clegg suggested he could not prop up the Prime Minister in a coalition government, describing the election as “the beginning of the end for Brown”.

In a bid to draw attention to the Tory leader’s Eton education, Brown spoke of his upbringing in an “ordinary family, in an ordinary town”. But the Tories are expected to hit back today by detailing Labour tax rises that have hit middle Britain.

Meanwhile, Labour was last night forced to drop plans for a 10 per cent tax rise on cider, following fierce opposition from MPs. It dropped the hike so it can push the rest of the Finance Bill through parliament.