Poliblogger was minding his own business near Bournemouth Pier, on a personal phone call. It was a bit cold on the seafront at 10 o’clock in the evening, so pacing and covering of extremities was essential.
Out of the corner of his eye, your humble Poliblogger saw a cortege of black cars pull up at the other side of the pier, and the next thing he was approached by a policeman. “Excuse me, Sir. Please withdraw your hand from your coat slowly, and keep both hands where I can see them – I am going to have to search you.”
One bag and body search (though thank goodness, not a cavity search) later, he explained that I had been acting suspiciously and that as the Prime Minister was a matter of yards away he had no choice. “With your hand inside your coat like that you look like you might be about to draw a gun – and the PM’s guys in the cortege over there will be getting twitchy.”
Eventually he let me go, before noting my address and who I work for – good job the Refugee Council isn’t a proscribed organisation… at least not yet!
I then went to the ippr reception to mingle with MPs, advisers and other lobbyists. As luck would have it, I bumped into one of Gordon’s policy advisers in there, and once I had managed to convince him that I bore no ill-will towards his boss, managed to get over some of the Refugee Council’s key concerns about destitution. And for good measure, I added some thoughts about the treatment of those stopped and searched by the police…