I'm in the Cabinet! Blimey!

30th September 2005 at 01:00
Some of Ruth Kelly's harshest critics cannot believe she has been made Education Secretary. This week she revealed that they are not alone - nor can she.

Asked at a conference fringe meeting if she pinched herself about her rapid progress up the political ladder she replied: "I do."

She said: "I wake up in the morning and think my God I'm in the Cabinet! Blimey!"

The question of whether she would lead the Labour party prompted a torrent of loud nervous laughter and a modest: "I just don't think it is possible whatsoever, I have got a huge job on my hands at the moment. Even thinking about that is impossible."

Ms Kelly revealed the influence of her early upbringing as a Catholic in Northern Ireland, where families like hers had to try to break into non-traditional professions.

"It has given me an acute sense on what it has been like actually to be the underdog in society," said the Oxford-educated former public school girl.

The Education Secretary admitted earlier this month that she was having discussions about progressive taxation at the age of six.

Log-in as an existing print or digital subscriber

Forgotten your subscriber ID?


To access this content and the full TES archive, subscribe now.

View subscriber offers


Get TES online and delivered to your door – for less than the price of a coffee

Save 33% off the cover price with this great subscription offer. Every copy delivered to your door by first-class post, plus full access to TES online and the TES app for just £1.90 per week.
Subscribers also enjoy a range of fantastic offers and benefits worth over £270:

  • Discounts off TES Institute courses
  • Access over 200,000 articles in the TES online archive
  • Free Tastecard membership worth £79.99
  • Discounts with Zipcar, Buyagift.com, Virgin Wines and other partners
Order your low-cost subscription today