UK Politics

Ken Clarke explains how he got black eye

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Media captionThe Justice Secretary, Ken Clarke, told BBC Radio Nottingham that his bruising was getting worse

Ken Clarke - well known as one of Westminster's political bruisers - has been explaining how he got a black eye.

The justice secretary was sporting the shiner at a news conference with the prime minister on Friday morning.

David Cameron joked that the pair had not been fighting, after Mr Clarke introduced him at the "No to AV" event.

Mr Clarke told BBC News he fell over getting out of his car in the grounds of Parliament and hit his forehead on a step.

He also suffered a cut to the forehead in the incident in Speaker's Court.

The former chancellor, who has been an MP since 1970, told BBC Radio Nottingham his bruising was getting worse.

"It's sort of spreading. It wasn't a black eye it was a lump on my forehead, but with blood seeping down or something...

"It's like a lot of these daft things, it was not a serious injury but it's turned into a lovely black eye in the course of the morning."

Cosmetic surgery

Mr Clarke, who is Conservative MP for Rushcliffe, in Nottingham, added that his stumble happened two days ago.

A thick layer of make-up had to be applied to his face ahead of a series of TV interviews.

He later laughed off suggestions that he should get cosmetic surgery, saying he was "beyond all that".

Mr Clarke, who is chairman of the No2AV campaign, introduced Mr Cameron at a campaign event in London.

The prime minister told him: "I'm very sorry about your black eye", before joking: "There's absolutely no truth in the rumour we have been having a fight - and it wasn't a judge either. It was a fall."