YP Comment: Heseltine disloyalty punished

MORE than 30 years after walking out of Margaret Thatcher's government over Westland in high dudgeon, Michael Heseltine has not lost his sense of political drama after leading the House of Lords revolt of Brexit. Despite being a passionate advocate for the regeneration of the North's cities, he could not fulfil this role while remaining so opposed to the Government's stance on exiting the European Union.

Unlike Mrs Thatcher, who never got the chance to sack her then defence secretary and eventual nemesis for disloyalty, Theresa May did not hesitate to do so and this test of mettle endears her still further to her party’s eurosceptics who still idolise the original ‘iron lady’ to this day.

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The only surprise, even regret, was Lord Heseltine’s candid admission that he did not know Mrs May and had never spoken to her. Leaving aside his pro-EU views, the former Deputy Prime Minister remains a formidable figure who has been working tirelessly to transform those Northern cities that were neglected for too long. Given the wider importance of Mrs May’s One Nation agenda, she can’t afford to overlook such expertise, can she?