Six years ago she wrote:
I talk to many people each week but you are all too polite to ask me any details about my expenses.
That is why I want to make it clear I do not claim anything at all for my mortgage, property maintenance, furniture or food. I pay all these myself.
Under the rules, I could claim for a second home, but I won’t, and I never have – my only home is the same one in Colliers Wood where I have lived since before I was elected in 1997. The only personal expense I re-claim is for transport.To put that in context, I remember an occasion when Mum and Dad came up to London from Cardiff on one of those trips where a Welsh charabang drops you off in the West End on Saturday, you go and see a show, get put up in a hotel, and are taken back the next day.
I arranged to meet them for lunch in Covent Garden on Sunday and - as it was a nice day - decided to cycle in from Colliers Wood. En route I came over Westminster Bridge and past the Houses of Parliament (1). That is right I biked it from the constituency to her place of work. On that day I concluded that a system that would allow her to claim for a second home was corrupt but that she was honest and that I would vote for her as long as she stood, party politics notwithstanding.
1. You would have crossed via Waterloo Bridge as you are more intelligent, a shrewder navigator, and - let's face it - better looking than me.