Martin Salter's tales of famous friendsBy Linda Fort
January 07, 2010
The Reading West MP is dropping plenty of celebrity names in his final annual report before stepping down at the General Election.
The front page features Martin Salter hugging actress Joanna Lumley and a Gurkha.
The second page has him shaking the hand of the Reverend Jesse Jackson.
And the next page features an interview by Trisha Goddard, an old friend from his schooldays.
The TV chat show host – three years his junior – was a pupil at the independent girls’ school Sir William Perkins in Chertsey, Surrey, while Mr Salter went to a grammar school in Egham four miles away.
In the interview, Ms Goddard asks the MP how he got into politics, what he has achieved, about his work in Parliament and what he plans next.
After a long gap, Mr Salter and Ms Goddard recently made contact and renewed their friendship.
Mr Salter said: “Back in the early 70s I used to run around with the same group of people as Trisha and it has been great to pick up the threads of our misspent youth.
“Trisha went into journalism and became well known as a campaigner on mental health issues, whilst I drifted into politics.
“I was really pleased a couple of years ago when Trisha invited Reading mum Liz Longhurst on to her show to promote the campaign we were running against violent internet pornography.
“I am hoping we will be able to do some more work together in the future.”
Mr Salter is also offering to organise farewell meetings in his constituency, if there is a local demand before the general election is called.
He said: “When I announced I was standing down back in February, over 500 of my constituents wrote to me, many of whom asked if I was planning any farewell events.
“People really were most kind and generous in their comments and I thought this would be a nice opportunity for me to visit a number of communities in my constituency to thank them personally for their support and encouragement over the last 13 years.”