The mystery of the Czech vase

SPY-HUNTING hacks on the trail of Agent COB stories in north London should start directing some questions at the Holborn and St Pancras branch of the Labour Party.

Former local member Rosalind Russell, now in Northumberland, has after all provided a heavy clue in the Telegraph‘s letters pages.

“It comes as no surprise to hear of a Czech spy’s alleged overtures to Jeremy Corbyn in his Islington constituency during the 1980s. In neighbouring Holborn and St Pancras, in the Camden Labour Party office where I was a youthful volunteer, we too had a visit from a Czech ‘diplomat’,” she writs.

“He arrived unexpectedly, saying he was interested in learning about our election process. He brought with him a gift, a large cut-crystal Czechoslovak vase. After he left, we inspected it carefully for bugs, then immersed it in very hot water, just in case.”

But where is the suspicious, bugged up vase now? On a shelf somewhere, listening in on everything the constituency’s new MP Sir Keir Starmer says?

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