I just say this little morsel in The Guardian's diary column today. Think back to 1995 and delete the words Labour, Lord and Hendry and insert the words Tory and MP and I suspect The Guardian wouldn't have used this as a diary story - it would have been front page news.
There'll be one red face in the House of Lords, we'll wager, after Labour Lord Pendry, who chairs the all-party sports committee and objects to the Commons free vote that banned smoking in all public spaces, sent hundreds of letters to his fellow peers asking them to support amendments he has tabled in the Lords that would allow private clubs to decide themselves whether or not to ban the evil weed. Curiously, he neglected to tell them - until one noticed from the franking - that the postage had been generously paid by the Tobacco Manufacturers' Association. "I couldn't get a secretary to do it, so they offered," he said. How enterprising!
Strangely there is no mention on the Tobacco Manufacturers Association in Lord Pendry's entry in the Register of Lords' Interests. I trust that will soon be rectified.