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Last Updated: Thursday, 22 July, 2004, 21:14 GMT 22:14 UK
Bono's gift of a guitar to Blair
U2 singer Bono
Bono's gift was not one the prime minister chose to keep
As prime minister, Tony Blair gets offered some pretty cool gifts but despite being something of an "axeman" he turned down a guitar from U2's Bono.

The instrument is just one of a series of items offered to the prime minister - himself a guitar player.

He can accept gifts worth up to 140 - but has to make up anything costing more. In the case of Bono's guitar it was a question of thanks but no thanks.

The item was just one many the prime minister was offered last year.

Clothes fan?

It, like many others, is recorded as being held by the prime minister's office.

Mr Blair only opted to keep clothes from Australian company Globe worth 324 in spite of gifts of wine from President Jacques Chirac of France and a rug from Libya's Colonel Gadaffi.

Gifts valued over 140 were revealed in a written Parliamentary answer from Mr Blair and his fellow ministers.

Afghan President Hamid Karzai also offered Mr Blair rugs while the Italian government's gift was earrings.


There was also a "selection of merchandise" from the Simpsons Production Company - Mr Blair featured in an episode of the successful US cartoon.

Tony Blair
Mr Blair used to be in a band called the Ugly Rumours
Listing the gifts given to members of the government follows a recommendation by Parliamentary Ombudsman Ann Abraham.

Most of them are held by government departments although ministers do occasionally pay up to keep the gifts.

According to the Ministerial Code of Conduct, anyone who wishes to keep a gift worth more than the 140 limit has to make up the rest of the value.

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