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Prime Minister’s Questions is the bear pit of British politics, a unique way of holding the powerful to account. While it is watched and admired around the world, it is often hated at home for bringing out the worst in our politicians. However, despite the best attempts of successive party leaders to try and move away from ‘Punch and Judy politics’, PMQs are here to stay. It sets the agenda, indicates who’s up and who's down and, most importantly, defines Prime Ministers and Leaders of the Opposition.

Ayesha Hazarika and Tom Hamilton spent every Wednesday morning for five years preparing Ed Miliband for combat ahead of PMQs, with varying degrees of success.

They know what it’s like to prepare a leader for the most stressful, unforgiving moment of the political week and they have lived through the drama, tension and black humour that goes with being in the room. They have seen the highs when a leader wins at the Dispatch Box as well as – perhaps more often – the lows when they take a beating.

This book lifts the lid on PMQs, reveals the tricks of the trade from leading politicians and the people who prepared them, and takes you behind the scenes of some of the biggest PMQs moments.

Part history, part inside account, this book is an entertaining and honest guide to one of the most loved, feared and loathed features of British politics by two people who know just how tough it can be.


That rare thing: a genuinely informative, funny and original book on politics, which takes something you vaguely thought you knew all about – Prime Minister’s Questions – and makes you look at it freshly. Hamilton and Hazarika combine a serious, rigorous analysis of tactics, strategies and outcomes across modern political history with excellent gossip and some hilarious personal recollections of life on the front line.

Andrew Marr

A fair, thorough and enjoyable study of the art and science of Prime Minister’s Questions. For those of us who have been participants, it brings back memories of dramatic moments we lived through; for observers, it reveals the techniques and tensions behind the duelling of political leaders. Well worth reading by anyone who wants to understand the workings of parliamentary democracy.

William Hague

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  • Hardback, 352 pages
  • ISBN: 9781785901843
  • 29 May 2018
    Available to pre-order
  • £18.99

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  • ISBN: 9781785903588
  • 29 May 2018
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