Jessica Brown Findlay, the Downton Abbey star, says the cast got demob happy towards the end of filming the new series and had some fun placing a whoopee cushion beneath each other.

Happily, Dame Maggie Smith was not subjected to such japes. “You just don’t do that to her,” the actress told me at the V Festival in Chelmsford.

She was a guest in Virgin Media’s luxurious Louder Lounge along with Tom Watson, Labour’s own witchfinder general. I trust all the hospitality will be declared.

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