(Image: House of Commons/PA Wire)

We have moved the international affairs desk of Crikey to the Raffles Café in Paddington. Paddington, the gully trap of London. Paddington, where hope comes to die. Paddington, a warren of streets of Georgian terraces, flea-bitten hotels, rooms carved out of stairwells, dying pubs, crammed corner shops.

Paddington, ungentrifiable, the great glass arches and vaults of the station rising like a waking kraken above the shabby streets. And in the middle of it, the Raffles, king of a row of sad cafes. Its Raffles breakfast, a three-quarters English, used to be three quid with tea thrown in, kept me going through thin times more than once.