When I first started in this (ministerial) job, I used to joke that if I ever got really stuck at the despatch box with a question I just couldn’t answer, I would simply pretend to faint. Such action isn’t covered in Erskine May, the “Bible” of Commons procedure, after all.
Anyway, I didn’t have to resort to such extreme measures today. Nevertheless, it’s always an incredible relief at the end of questions when the Speaker calls time and we move onto the next business.
“Not fainting”… Tom at the despatch box