Amid a load of worthy ads in The Guardian designed to influence government policy at the time of the Labour conference, one full-page insertion particularly stands out. "The Campaign to Save our Supplements" warns us that vitamins and minerals are under threat from an EU directive that's designed to clamp down on alternative, unregulated medicine. While on balance I probably share the view that we could do without this particular piece of legislation, I couldn't help but smile at the list of signatories in an open letter addressed to Gordon Brown.
Among the vitamin lovers, we find Sir Cliff Richard, Cilla Black OBE and Gloria Hunniford. Martin Shaw ("Judge John Deed" and former star of 70s action drama The Professionals) also adds his stamp of approval, alongside Eamon Holmes, Felicity Kendal CBE and Cherie Blair's erstwhile lifestyle guru, Carole Caplin.
It comes as no surprise that Dame Judi Dench and Helena Bonham-Carter are worried about the availability of their precious supplements, but I was a bit thrown by the inclusion on the list of David Moyes. Do they mean David Moyes as in Everton FC? He doesn't seem to fit the profile of the other contributors. I'm wondering whether perhaps there's another David Moyes I don't know, who's currently appearing in an adaptation of An Inspector Calls at The Everyman Playhouse in Liverpool?
Notable by his absence is grand luvvie Patrick Stewart. Posters on the tube in London proclaim his current stint in the Scottish Play to be the "best performance of his life", which is patently absurd. Haven't the blurb writers seen him as Captain Jean-Luc Picard of the Federation Starship Enterprise? He always ordered "Earl Grey Tea - hot!" from his replicator. But no vitamins as far as I can remember.