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Helping Tories add up the sums

Those among you who believe that celebrity-fronted advertisements should come with a stern health warning might have raised an eyebrow at the beginning of this month, when it became known that former Countdown presenter Carol Vorderman is to head a Tory party task force to make maths fun.

According to these doubting Thomases, the problem is that for 10 years Vorderman supplemented her estimated £900,000 salary from Channel 4 as the face of FirstPlus – a debt consolidation company and purveyor of innovative secured personal loans which, according to debt counselling agencies, have led many a borrower into ruin.

Credited with an IQ of 154 and regarded by game show fans as a mathematical wizard, it was widely felt that Vorderman was disingenuous at best in using her persona in this way. But hoodie-hugging David Cameron and Tory education spokesman Michael Gove are more positive and have asked her to make maths more chirpy, so that’s all right.

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