A stateswoman right to the end

BARONESS Thatcher's death certificate describes her profession as “stateswoman (retired)” – drawing a final comparison between the Iron Lady and Sir Winston Churchill, who was named as a statesman on his 1965 record of death.

For the first time since the state funeral of the wartime Prime Minister, who also died from a stroke, the bells of Big Ben will be silenced later this morning for the duration of the funeral service, from the moment Thatcher’s coffin is carried up the steps of St Paul’s cathedral by ten soldiers.

While today’s ceremony is not a full state funeral as Churchill’s was, the Queen will be among the mourners – the first time she has attended a prime ministerial funeral since Churchill.

Other confirmed guests include former US vice president Dick Cheney and ex-secretary of state Henry Kissinger, although the Argentine ambassador Alicia Castro has turned down her invitation.

Protesters are also apparently planning to attend. Which brings to mind one of Churchill’s maxims: “You have enemies? Good. That means you’ve stood up for something, sometime in your life.”

When M&S disposed of the services of PR firm Tulchan after eight years recently, many expected the account to go back to Brunswick. That’s because the embattled M&S chief executive Marc Bolland had been in talks with Brunswick supremo Alan Parker about making the switch back. But yesterday it emerged that Roland Rudd’s RLM Finsbury has won the account. Many had ruled out Rudd because his agency already acts for Sainsbury’s, seen as a competitor. But the ever diplomatic Rudd (pictured, right) has managed to get both groups to approve the move.

The City of London introduced a strict “code of good practice” for all Square Mile watering holes yesterday. The 750 licensed premises within the City will have to offer multiple anti drink spiking products to customers, provide a “chill out area” which is cooler and quieter than the rest of the venue and install CCTV both indoors and outdoors. By the looks of it, proprietors also ought to stock up on stationery, as every time a thirsty worker is refused entry for failing to “meet admissions standards” an entry must be made in a log book – and the same goes for when a patron is refused service for not carrying ID, which must be recorded in a refusals book. No doubt these boozy diaries of City nightlife will soon make for an entertaining read.