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During the summer of 1961 scandal enveloped Harold Macmillan’s Conservative Government, driven by tabloid sensationalism and Cold War intrigue. A brief relationship between John Profumo, Secretary of State for War, and an aspiring model, Christine Keeler, ended when the Security Services informed Profumo of Keeler’s connections with a Soviet spy. Yet rumours persisted and in March 1963 Profumo stood before the House of Commons and denied improprieties with Keeler.
Due to the persistence of Labour politician George Wigg the storm continued and Profumo resigned as a member shortly after. The beleaguered Government appointed Lord Denning to conduct a judicial inquiry into the affair. The Report, released with much press interest in the autumn of 1963, concluded that there had been no security risk. Profumo withdrew from public life, devoting himself to charitable works for which he was awarded a CBE in 1975.
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