In Brief

#GoveBeard: The best Michael Gove beard memes

Former justice secretary's elusive facial hair prompts Twitter users to get creative

August is often a time for politicians to take a break and let their hair down. Michael Gove, it appears, may have taken the phrase all too literally.

The Twittersphere lit up yesterday after John Rentoul, The Independent's chief political commentator, reported the former justice secretary and one-time prime ministerial contender had been seen sporting some new facial hair.

"Breaking news. Michael Gove, spotted in the Palace of Westminster, has grown a beard," reported Rentoul.

Many expressed initial doubts about the claim, but Gove's follicular news was corroborated by Buzzfeed journalist Marie Le Conte, who wrote: "BREAKING: more details on Gove's new beard, according to a pal who works in Parliament: 'Just seen Gove's new beard. 4/10 patchy in parts, not dark enough to justify.'"

With no images to confirm the news, Tweeters began creating their own version of what they believed the beard might look like, using the Twitter hashtag #GoveBeard to share their creations:

Finally, the London Evening Standard managed to get hold of a real shot:

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