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  The MiP files: Inside Tony Blair's house!
Updated 17 December 2002, 08.51

What's parliament all about?

We wanted to know, so we recruited a man on the inside to provide us with exclusive info and secret goss every Tuesday.

You can also ask him questions and get him to track down your MP. Go to the bottom of the page for how.

It's got two front doors, a ghost and you can leave without going outside!

I'm talking about 10 Downing Street, the prime minister's house. Jessica, 11, from Derby, asks if I've ever been inside.

Your MiP gets everywhere, Jessica.

The most amazing thing about Number 10 is how big it is.

It's got loads of rooms filled with ornate furniture and valuable paintings where they hold meetings and parties.

There are also lots of dull-looking offices too!

One room is supposed to be haunted by a woman in a long dress and pearls.

There are corridors which mean Tony Blair can get to different government offices without going outside!

It has two identical front doors so that whenever one needs a lick of paint, the other can be put in its place.

Get this too - the prime minister doesn't have any keys - instead there is always someone on duty to let people in.

And in fact, Mr Blair only uses the house for working - there's more space for him and his family to live next door at Number 11!

You can take a tour of Downing Street at Mr Blair's website

Talking of Mr Blair, I came across this photograph of him aged 29 the other day.

Thought you might like to see it.

It was taken 20 years ago when he first tried to get elected to parliament.

He was 29 at the time.

Nice haircut Tony!

Shocking findings.

About four million children in the UK are living in very poor families, according to a new report.

That works out at nearly one in every three kids.

You probably don't remember when Margaret Thatcher was the prime minister.

She stood down in 1990 - but I bet you've heard of her!

She'll go down in history as one of the most famous Conservative leaders.

Last week she praised Tony Blair - the Labour prime minister - as "strong and bold" over tackling the Iraq dictator Saddam Hussein.

That's not something all Conservatives would say!

Each week our MiP will give you the chance to have your MP identified.

Just send us your name and postcode using the boxes at the bottom and he'll do the rest.

This week, Danny, 11, from Ellesmere Port gets his MP identified.

Andrew Miller
Where are you from?
Born in Middlesex, primary school in Malta, secondary school in Hampshire and have lived in Cheshire since 1977
School nickname:
I wore glasses at that time so I will leave it to you to guess.

Greatest achievement:
Working on a report on human genetics (understanding more about the way humans work).
A couple of my school teachers gave me the self confidence needed in my work.
Last movie I saw:
Die Another Day
Football team:
I used to be a regular at Portsmouth, but recently I was really proud to watch Vauxhall Motors beat Queens Park Rangers in the FA Cup.
MP I admire:
Douglas Alexander - one of the youngest members of the House of Commons who has a great future
Were you interested in politics as a child?
Not until the age of about 16
Why does politics matter?
Politics is about ensuring fairness in society and, because there are always very difficult choices to make, politics affects everybody all of the time.
What one thing would you change tomorrow?
Make sure that people around the world were well fed and had access to clean water and a good education.

Andrew Miller can be contacted via his website at BORDER=0

Got a question for our Man in Parliament?

Want to know who your MP is?

Send stuff to him using this form!

Your first name

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Your town

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Any comments or questions for our MiP

Send us your details if you'd like us to hunt out your MP! We'll put a new one up each week.

More InfoBORDER=0
PicturesPhotos of the top MPs
Find OutHow does Parliament work?


Past StoriesBORDER=0
MiP file: The Queen comes into town
The MiP files: Why Blair listens to Foo Fighters!
The MiP files: Threat to cod and chips!
The MiP files: How much is spent on you?
The MiP files: Anger about pet shop plans


Web Links
UK Parliament site for kids
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Also in The MiP files now:
MiP Files: The prime minister's crucial week
MiP file: Tory leader faces off with PM
MiP files: A new leader for the Tories?
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