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When Cherie met Tony on a London bus

world Updated: May 16, 2008 01:28 IST
When Cherie met Tony on a London bus

Cherie Blair revealed on Thursday how she found love with her husband-to-be Tony on a London double-decker bus — and how the former British premier angrily scolded her on their last day in Downing Street.

The personal anecdotes were from a forthcoming autobiography in which she has also discussed how she three-timed Tony, despite calling herself a “good Catholic girl”.

The autobiography is being serialised in The Times of London.

In the latest instalment Cherie tells how, when the couple were young lawyers, they ended up on a late-night bus together after a party at their legal chambers. “It was a double-decker and we went upstairs. It was completely empty and by the time we got off we knew each other better than when we’d got on. And even better the next morning,” she writes in her book, Speaking for Myself.

The trouble was, she was already linked with two other men.

“Tony knew about John, but not about David. John knew about David but not about Tony, and poor David fondly imagined I was living a quiet life of hard work in dreary London,” she wrote.

Within a year he had proposed to her, leading to married life and a growing family as Tony worked his way up the political ladder, becoming Labour Party leader and eventually sweeping into Downing Street in 1997.

Critics have noted how the revelations pose questions given her description of herself as a “good Catholic girl”.

Fast forward to Blair’s last day in office, last June, when Cherie — whose relations with the press had long been strained — told photographers she would not miss them as she left Downing Street — the last words of their time at number 10.

Once in the car, her husband was livid. “‘You can’t resist it, can you?’ Tony said through clenched teeth as the door closed behind me. ‘For God’s sake, you’re supposed to be dignified, you’re supposed to be gracious’,” she wrote.

“We had discussed it so often: leaving was to be on his terms and was to be done with dignity and grace.... It was not my day, it was Tony’s day. I knew it, and he knew it, and I sat beside him feeling both foolish and small.”