I HAD the great pleasure of meeting Boris Johnson the other day.

Or to be more precise, the pleasure of interviewing him on video and watching him work a room of 250 people like the ultimate political pro that he is.

They used to say that politicians like Bill Clinton (and Tony Blair to a certain degree) would make you feel as if you were the most important person in the room as he looked you straight in the eye and shook you warmly by the hand.

Johnson has that gift which is one of the reasons he is where he is.

After speaking to the Daily Echo, Mr Johnson (I refuse to join in the ‘Boris’ game) then spoke to and had a selfie with almost every one of the people who’d paid £60 to see him, before sitting down to dinner and then making a very clever, tub thumping speech in support of Brexit.

My delight at seeing the former mayor of London and future leader of the Conservative party at close quarters and my admiration for him as a supreme operator should not be confused with support for him or his position on Europe.

That’s between me and the ballot box.

I wouldn’t trust Mr Johnson, utterly charming fellow that he is, any further than I could throw him.

Or any of the rest of them for that matter.

The struggle in the Tory party over the past few weeks just goes to show how internecine warfare is the most vicious and nastiest combat of all.

Across the divide in the Commons or on the traditional political battlefield you have a grudging respect for your opponent.

But not in this case where it’s been no holds barred in a bid to defenestrate, decapitate or simply rip the throat out of the other side.

Good luck to those who are charged with putting the Conservative party back together again after June 23.

By and large, what a lousy bunch they have been, on both sides of the referendum debate.

At least some politicians have had the decency to admit the voters have been let down.

Bournemouth West MP, Conor Burns, who at least keeps the debate at a decent level, admits overall it has been negative and hollow.

And fellow Brexit campaigner Martyn Underhill, Dorset’s police and crime commissioner, argues the whole campaign has been fundamentally flawed.

Europe is much too important an issue in both sides of the argument to play fast and loose with the truth, which is what has happened. They would never have been able to get away with all this in the general election.

The complete fabrications. The hyperbole. The ridiculous and unfounded assertions. The total nonsense. The desperate spin and half truths.

The political establishment has treated the electorate with utter contempt.

The conduct of the campaign has been an absolute disgrace.

A plague on all their houses. A plague that will undoubtedly last way beyond the referendum campaign.

n The last time I wrote this column, my beloved football team, Leicester City was on the brink of winning the Premier League, the richest and most popular sporting competition in the world.

As a few of you might know, they did it having been 5,000 to 1 at the beginning of the season and most punters’ bet for relegation.

It made all of those 360-mile round trips from Highcliffe to the East Midlands every other weekend more than worth it.

I suspected I might shed a few tears at the last home game in April when the trophy was raised aloft. And indeed I did (and all those around me in SK4 at the King Power Stadium.)

I can’t speak for any of them, but it wasn’t the football that made me cry, although winning the league after 45 years of following the Foxes was very emotional. No, it was the beautiful music of the incredible Andrea Bocelli singing Nessun Dorma and Time To Say Goodbye just before kick off that did it.

Funny old game, music.