Time to put the boot into Eton

27th January 2006 at 00:00
Eton is getting far too common. The Prime Minister, as we all know, went to "the Scottish Eton" - Fettes college. Tory wonderboy David Cameron went to - well, Eton. Now it has been revealed (on the Daily Telegraph's letters page, naturally) that Neil Kinnock's old school, Lewis school in Pengam, was once described by David Lloyd George as "the Eton of Wales". There's probably one lurking in Northern Ireland too. Then there is former education minister David Miliband's dream of creating an academy that is "the Eton of the state sector".

Can we not give the wretched name a rest?

A possible alternative suggests itself. Dr Anthony Seldon, new head of the grand public school Wellington college, says he is keen to support an academy. The Diary thinks "the Wellington of the state sector" would have a fine ring. Not only would it recall one of our great British heroes; it also has a certain boot-like charm.

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