With his long standing interest in exotic islands (manifest recently in a bizarre series of parliamentary questions) Lord Ashcroft may have seemed a natural fit as the government’s senior adviser to a review of Britain’s military presence in Cyprus.

But it seems the Liberal Democrats still require some persuasion. The quotable Lord Oakeshott of Seagrove Bay had the following choice words for Scrapbook’s favourite tax-optimiser:

“Lord Ashcroft’s qualifications for this task are his collection of old VCs [Victoria Crosses], years of private plane and yacht rides with William Hague, and a decade of vast Tory donations as a secret non-dom.”

The former treasury spokesman is, as ever, on message for coalition harmony.

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