I have been having a slightly tumultuous week. On Tuesday I managed to get locked on the roof of Urban and Civic (I kid you not) with Robin Butler and Tim Leathes. We had walked out onto the decking of the roof terrace to gossip about the neighbours when the door slammed shut in the wind. We all three had to lean over the railing and bellow in unison to attract the attention of Catherine in the office below (mercifully her window was open) to come and rescue us. And I suffer from vertigo! Could have been very serious that (but Robin had already had his blues guitar lesson that morning so the timing wasn't too disastrous). Needless to say, it caused much merriment.
Didn't last long! Of course the entire London community (and many others from elsewhere I guess; the LGA mob for starters) this week is recoiling in shock at the dreadful news of the sudden death of Simon Milton. What a terribly sad thing to have happened. Notwithstanding that Simon was a lovely man (always unfailingly kind to me, despite the fact that, when he was at Westminster and I was at Paddington, I had been a major irritant on numerous occasions) this will deal a pretty powerful body blow to London governance. As one of my correspondents put it rather pithily "it really leaves Boris in the s--t on the sensibleness front" and this certainly is the consensus abroad. I understand the funeral was yesterday. It will have been a deeply sad occasion. It is very very sad to lose such a gentle and decent and competent public servant. And it is very sad to lose yet another friend, both personally and professionally.