This morning the House of Commons has published details and receipts of MPs' claims on the taxpayer for 2008-09.

Here, for example, is the tally of some of what we have paid to keep the Prime Minister and his Scottish home and garden looking clean, neat and tidy:

  • £1,932.50 for 'providing domestic services'
  • £175 for grass cutting
  • £10.49 for dry cleaning
  • £38.30 for laundry
  • £41 on washing
  • £49.50 on ironing
  • £168 on carpet cleaning
  • £195 on 'pruning, weeding and edging'
  • £500 for painting a summer house It is being reported that Brown has now repaid this sum
  • £58.60 on window cleaning

I note a claim of for £22.50 for Sky+ handset – was there a previous one which went the same way as Prime Ministerial mobile phones? (N.B. a £99 claim for Sky TV was refused because he failed to provide a receipt).

Meanwhile, I was intrigued to note that in the itemised section of his phone bill for December 2008 to February 2009, he made a phone call to a number in Canterbury at 10.29pm on Christmas Eve which lasted nearly two hours…

Jonathan Isaby