Nicky Morgan yesterday made a conciliatory reference to fellow Tory leadership no-hoper Michael Gove’s penchant for Charlie as a naive young 31 year old journalist.

“He has expressed regret and he is entirely right that people should not be judged by their worst mistakes. Peter Sutcliffe may have made a few errors of judgement in terms of whether or not to murder people, but he was a scrupulous and careful HGV driver.”

“Edward Smith was a kind family man and excellent organiser and motivator of his crew. But he will always be judged on his single ice-berg based mistake whilst captaining the Titanic.”

There were, however, some mistakes that Ms Morgan found difficult to forgive.

“Running through a field of wheat?? Mindless vandalism and completely inexcusable.”