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Bubbly mystery solved.

You would not have thought that Gordon Brown has much to celebrate after this week's Cabinet reshuffle.

So why were 10 cases of Moet et Chandon champagne standing outside 11 Downing Street, while the deliveryman waits patiently for the door of the Chancellor's official residence to open?

Perhaps he wanted to drown his sorrows in style after losing his reported battle with the Prime Minister over the reinstatement to the Cabinet of his political rival Alan Milburn. Then the boring truth emerged. The Chancellor will not, after all, be sobbing into his champagne over yet another blow to his political pride.

He is hosting instead a party for Sir Andrew Likierman, the Government's chief accountant since 1993, who is retiring.
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Publication:The Journal (Newcastle, England)
Date:Sep 10, 2004
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