He and Key met briefly at Oxford but struck up a friendship when they were both still Opposition leaders. When Cameron was confronted with an MMP style result on election night 2009 it was Key who offered advice by phone and text. Key, for his part, thinks of himself, Cameron, Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, who will be joining them for dinner, as a special breed of modernizing, less ideological, right wingers - so much so, says Key, that US President Barack Obama sees them as having as much in common with him as they do with each other, despite coming from what is traditionally seen as the other side of the political spectrum. "President Obama has said to me... some of the leaders around the world he would count as friends are fundamentally from centre right parties - Harper, me and Cameron," says Key.
The news that nice Mr Key met nice Mr Cameron at Oxford, a university the latter attended, will come as a surprise to many of us, since we no nothing of when Mr Key went up, whether he read Mods and Greats or PPE, whether he was a scholar or an exhibitioner or whether he was any good on the river. More surprising still is the revelation that a newspaper story can be written in treacle.
The estimable Bounder has posted the image that was published with this article, proof that Photoshop is a many splendored thing.