EPHRAIM HARDCASTLE: Should novelist Kingsley Amis and poet Philip Larkin now be regarded as paedophiles



00:17 GMT, 30 November 2012

Should late chums novelist Kingsley Amis and poet Philip Larkin now be regarded as paedophiles Letters they wrote to each other indicate an interest in underage girls.

Says literary reviewer Christopher Hart: ‘Some of the letters housed in the Bodleian Library contain fantasies about girls aged between 12 and 16.

Perhaps they should be put on some post-mortem Jimmy Savile register, along with Elvis Presley, Edgar Allan Poe, Romeo [of Juliet fame], and quite a few others.’

Author Kingsley Amis, who wrote letters to his friend poet Phillip Larkin

Author Kingsley Amis, who wrote letters to his friend poet Philip Larkin

JOHN Lennon’s widow, Yoko Ono, has launched a ‘menswear fashion range’ including jock-straps, buttock-revealing trousers, tank top vests with nipple cut-outs, and a pink mesh creation, pictured right, – all inspired, she says, by drawings she did as a wedding gift to her ‘hot bod’ husband in 1969. ‘As huge, long-time fans of Yoko’s art, we have great respect for her artistic vision, aesthetics, and intellect,’ says Humberto Leon, the schmatta merchant involved. He speaks for all of us, I am sure.

LIVELY Lady Williams of Elvel, 81, mother of the Rt Rev Justin Welby, soon-to-be Archbishop of Canterbury, has been advised by Church officials not to discuss her family’s exotic background. ‘I’ve been told to refer everything to the Church press office,’ she tells me. Aged 25, Jane Portal (as she then was) married roguish businessman Gavin Welby, 42, in 1955. His colourful business career included a spell as a US bootlegger.

The pair divorced after three years and Welby died in 1977. In 1975, Jane married businessman Charles Williams, who became a Labour life peer in 1985. She admits not knowing of Welby’s previous marriage to American Doris Sturzenegger, adding: ‘I know what people think – that the previous marriage wasn’t dissolved and, as a result, Justin is illegitimate but I’m sure there was a divorce from the first wife.’

TONY Blair calls Eurosceptics ‘a virus’, saying the UK would be a second-rate power if we left the EU. He first entered Parliament in 1983 on a Labour Party manifesto promising to ‘negotiate withdrawal from the EEC (as it then was) which has drained our natural resources and destroyed jobs’. That was before he thought he might become the EU’s first elected president.

THE ‘Popemobile’ that transported Pope John Paul II around Ireland on the historic 1979 state visit can now be hired out in Dublin for 250 an hour. An additional 15 seats have been added around the Papal ‘throne’. A must-have resource for discerning organisers of hen parties and ladette nights out. It’s rather disrespectful to the Vatican but the Roman Catholic Church’s stock in Ireland isn’t as high as it used to be.

IS Hugh Grant’s box office appeal waning His Channel 4 documentary on phone hacking attracted only 470,000 viewers, 1.9 per cent of the potential audience and fewer than Channel 5’s rival attraction, The Removal Men.