Whatever your political leanings, you’d have to have had a heart of steel not to be moved by Gordon Brown’s resignation announcement last night. I had a lump in my throat watching his poised and dignified address to the gathered media, which only worsened as he and his wife Sarah and their two little boys walked away from Downing Street for the last time.
As the door of Number 10 later closed on David and Samantha Cameron, however, I’ll admit to a sense of relief – but only because finally the frenzied speculation over who would form the next government was over and politicians and journalists could finally get some visibly badly needed sleep.
Now is time for speculation of a calmer kind as the Conservative/Lib Dem coalition gets to work. Much was promised in the breathless election campaign and party manifestos, and much concerning spending cuts and procurement. Already there have been compromises – according to the BBC the Lib Dems have dropped opposition to the replacement of the Trident nuclear weapons system (although have insisted on scrutinising it for value for money). And promises too – the Tories are standing by their pledge to reduce public spending by £6 billion this year.
Details will come out over the coming days and weeks and months, and the promised emergency budget, due within 50 days, will no doubt enlighten the purchasing profession as to what to expect. But what’s your initial reaction? What do you think the future holds?