Unpublished work for my school newsletter.October 2006.

It dawned a bright and sunny day on the 28th of September, when I and 30 other bright and enthusiastic CCHS students set off with the equally relentlessly cheerful Miss Ellman and Mr Warner, to argue with MPs, look around my future workplace, and run my poor unfortunate guide ragged with questions and requests to feel the seats in the Houses of Parliament.

Let us skip past the dreadfully irksome and tedious exercise of getting there, and take our fine and fired imagination immediately to gathering at the designated place after 50 minutes of gambolling around the streets of London (I saw 10 Downing Street and the new statue of the disabled woman in Trafalgar Square!). The English department’s stern emphasis on punctuality doesn’t seem to be self-applied, with both teachers arriving twenty minutes late. After immediate revenge by long suffering A level students gleeful at their chance to get their own back by threatening to ban them from the rest of the visit, we moved into Portcullis House, where we were frisked and searched for weapons, purple powder, etc and deposited in a committee room to meet our vict- MP.

Don Foster turned out to be a jovial bawdy sort, and a happy hour was spent discussing political issues with him (there was another school present, but their contribution was limited to one follically challenged juvenile saying he supported the BNP) before we moved to the only slightly more spine-tingling tour of Parliament itself. Charged with showing ten compatriots and I around the magnificent edifices of the Houses of Commons and Lords and supply details as necessary, my guide, pleasingly embonpoint, faced with the voluble good cop-bad cop questioning style of Miss Ellman and I, stood no chance; I was later informed we were half an hour later returning than all the other groups. However, she did her best, and I did get to at least push on the seats (The Lords are comfier.)

It was an exhausted me that re-embarked our hired conveyance (earnest inquisition really takes it out of one), exhilarated by my truly marvellous examination of the legislative body of our great nation.

SO going next year.

Sarah McCulloch, 12HGR