Secret diary of MP's wife set to ruffle feathers in Westminster

Sasha Swire, the wife of Sir Hugo, has a tell-all diary which is due to be published next week

Sasha Swire, the wife of former Conservative MP Sir Hugo Swire, will next week publish her diary filled with tales from Westminster
Sasha Swire, the wife of former Conservative MP Sir Hugo Swire, will next week publish her diary filled with tales from Westminster Credit: Desmond O'Neill Features Ltd

The tell-all diary of a former Conservative MP's wife is set to ruffle feathers in Westminster when it is published next week.

Sasha Swire, the wife of Sir Hugo who was elected as the MP for East Devon in 2001, chronicled their lives in politics for 20 years in a secret diary. After her husband stood down in December, she sent extracts from the diary to literary agents and had a book deal within three weeks.

Sir Hugo was only consulted about the project once a bidding war was underway, the former journalist told The Sunday Times. She didn't contact anyone else written about in the book to request their permission, she added.

In one entry, Mrs Swire, the daughter of former defence secretary Sir John Nott, describes Boris Johnson as a "calculating machine".

In a later entry describing a dinner she and Sir Hugo attended at No 10, Mrs Swire described the Prime Minister's fiancée Carrie Symonds as a "hot, young vixen". And Mr Johnson as "someone who is desperately lonely and unhappy on the inside".

When David Cameron's resignation honour's list, which included Sir Hugo, was derided in the press, Mrs Swire wrote: "I don't know what all the fuss is about. Why can't Dave pack out the list with his cronies if he wants to?"

In another extract, Mrs Swire writes that a royal visit to Hillsborough was almost derailed when the couple's daughter left a notebook containing sensitive security information about the Queen's itinerary in a pizza restaurant in Belfast, while Sir Hugo served as minister of state for Northern Ireland.

Anti-Eton bias prevented her husband from ever rising beyond the rank of minister for state, Mrs Swire goes on to claim. Writing about her husband, she recounts how he made an offensive joke about people on benefits at a Tory fundraiser, and in another entry tells how he "bunked off" Parliament to go shooting.

While hosting the Camerons, Mrs Swire said her husband, before accompanying the then Prime Minister for a jog, told Mr Cameron they would be passing a "top dogging spot". "No one is more amused by it than the Prime Minister himself, who starts to make lots of dogging jokes," she added.

The book portrays Sarah Vine, the wife of Michael Gove, as "bending over backwards to please the Camerons", "cooking all the food while Samantha [Cameron] was upstairs learning to cut patterns [she wants to set up a fashion business]".

Writing in her column for the Daily Mail yesterday, Mrs Vine said she can "count on the fingers of one hand" the number of times she met Mrs Swire, and accused her of viewing her friendship with Mrs Cameron as a threat.