Curious tales of unhappy prince

2nd July 2004 at 01:00
Prince Charles used his summer school for English and history teachers this week to deliver a curiously worded rant against "genetically modified education".

Did pages from his usual organic farming speech accidentally slip into his standard diatribe against trendy teaching? Or can we expect more cross-fertilisation in the prince's thinking? Denouncing Charles Clarke as a "monstrous carbuncle", perhaps, or something about sanitary products and former chief inspector Chris Woodhead?

Anyway, after the prince's speech, there was a BBC Any Questions session.

Panellist Mr Woodhead described the Tomlinson inquiry's recommendations for 14-19 education as a "disaster".

Presenter James Naughtie said: "Is there anyone out there who would disagree with that?" After a pause a voice at the back of the hall said:

"Mike Tomlinson might." Naughtie laughed and said: "He would if he was here." To which the voice replied: "He is here!" It was Tommo himself, red with rage.

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