Unlike her fellow supermodels Claudia Schiffer and Elle Macpherson, who have long since given up their regular sashays down the runway, Erin O'Connor
will never quit the catwalk.
The former Marks & Spencer model declares: "No. I hate that idea of retirement or 'you're past your sell-by-date'. That is very odd, because, for me, it is about moving, showcasing and being an outrageous poser."
The model, 32, who recently started living with her boyfriend, the City financier Dan Stewart, has, on the catwalk, been suspended from a 30ft harness, walked on water and played a dead person.
"You'd think after 15 years I would be bored, but I'm not," she added at the launch of Studio East Dining, Bistrotheque's temporary restaurant at Westfield Stratford City, in east London. "The catwalk is like liberation, because there is a bit of performance involved, a bit of skill thrown in, so it doesn't matter what age you are."
The Archbishop of Westminster, the Most Rev Vincent Nichols, was asked whether the new booklet explaining Pope Benedict XVI's forthcoming visit was in response to the Foreign Office memo that suggested the Pontiff might launch a brand of condoms or do forward rolls with children while here.
"We started doing this months ago," he said, but added mischievously: "I hope they will be made available in the Foreign Office."
The Queen will, as Mandrake disclosed, attend Wimbledon, for the first time in 33 years.
She will visit Centre Court, but also "Henman Hill", where fans watch matches on a huge screen. "She is keen to meet all types of fans," says a courtier.
Meanwhile, further to my item on Tuesday about the Duchess of Gloucester at Queen's, I have since learnt that her husband was not present, so she could not have made the comment attributed to her.