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Governing Britain: Power, politics and the prime minister

Patrick Diamond is one of the more convincing crusaders behind the banner of St Tony

By Robin McGhee  

Tony Blair: Did he really damage the civil service?

When Tony Blair hopped over the doorstep of No 10 Downing Street for the first time as Prime Minister in 1997, he encountered a huge crowd of civil servants in the entrance hall: they were applauding. Ten years later he left the House of Commons after his final Prime Minister’s Questions, exiting past the speaker’s chair to the sound of more applause, this time from the assembled MPs. Such adulation would be a pleasant bookending for…

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