As New Labour's first period of government picks up steam, we find Bernard Donoughue working as a minister at the Ministry of Agriculture, Fishing and Food. In this, the second volume of Donoughue's House of Lords diaries, he chronicles his experiences - often frustrating, often hilarious - serving in the early years of Blair's government, as he attempts to modernise MAFF by expanding its interests more broadly in rural affairs. It outlines Donoughue's role in the EU's agricultural policy, including as the UK minister at the Agriculture Council as well as his unofficial role in the lead-up to the Good Friday agreement. As with all Donoughue's diaries, the book sheds a spotlight on the daily trials and tribulations of life in Westminster, told with trademark waspish wit, insight and humour.
Lord (Bernard) Donoughue is a British politician, academic, businessman and author. He was Head of the No 10 Policy Unit under Harold Wilson and Jim Callaghan and was a key source for the writers of Yes, Minister and Yes, Prime Minister. He became a Labour peer in 1985 and served as Minister for Agriculture under Blair. His books include Prime Minister: Conduct of Policy Under Harold Wilson and James Callaghan, 1974-79; The Heat of the Kitchen: an autobiography; Downing Street Diary: Volume 1 - With Harold Wilson in No. 1 and Downing Street Diary: Volume 2 - With James Callaghan in No. 10. His latest volume of diaries: Westminster Diary: A Reluctant Minister under Blair were published by I.B.Tauris in 2016.