PLAYGROUP PRETTY SUBDUED AFTER OLIVER'S PARTY ON SATURDAY.

The Little People playgroup in Southampton experienced an especially slow Monday this week, with many members reportedly 'still trying to get over' preschooler Oliver Rolf's party last Saturday.

"It's going to be a long morning," said four-year-old Naomi Baker, one of several partygoers seen yawning heavily and nursing beakers of hot Ribena as they trudged into the Little People premises at just after 9am. "It takes a while to get back to real life after one of Ollie's parties."

Meanwhile Rolf himself was absent entirely, his mother having called in sick on his behalf. Reports that Rolf had seemed in pretty good form on Saturday, with his face painted like a tiger and chasing the girls around the garden, remain unconfirmed.

According to sources, the party started at around 1pm on Saturday at Rolf's house in the west of the city, and lasted well into the early hours of Saturday evening. Many attendees reported that celebrations remained civilised for most of the afternoon, but the free-flowing food and juice laid on by the host eventually took its toll.

"I was OK for the most part, but after about four o'clock it's all a blur," said Ayo Samuels as he switched on his Fisher Price toy laptop.

"I remember playing 'What's the time, Mr Wolf?', and I think someone said something about a magician turning up late on," he added. "But that's all. God, how much sugar was in those jellies?"

Some Little People colleagues had planned ahead for the tough start to the new week, playing late at the nursery last Thursday and Friday in preparation. However most said they hadn't anticipated such a heavy party, with playgroup productivity on Monday likely to be poor as a result.

"There's no way we're going to get through drawing and singalong by midday," said Bobby Cook, who was last seen stripping naked and diving into Rolf's paddling pool. "And do you really think I'm in any state to do play dough cookery? I don't even remember my mum taking me home on Saturday."

While Cook echoed the general sentiment that a quiet week was in order, by lunchtime rumours were already circulating of a surprise party this Thursday to celebrate Joanie Atkins' promotion to big school.

UK DADS STAND POIGNANTLY IN DOORWAY.

Sure, things have been tough lately, but everything's going to turn out OK, the UK's dads reported last night. Speaking from the country's bedroom doorways, the dads told sources that the last few months have been hard on all of us, especially the nation's mothers, but stressed that we will get through it if we just stick together. "We all get angry and say things we don't mean," the 8.2 million paternal figures said with their heads hanging sympathetically to one side, "I promise that things will seem different in the morning." The dads added that mainland Britain will feel better after a good night's sleep, before turning out the light and softly closing the door.

STALKER QUITS JOB TO SPEND MORE TIME WITH NICK CLEGG'S FAMILY.

Hospital administrator Michael Allen has decided to abandon his job in order to spend more time with Deputy Prime Minister Nick Clegg's family, the 44-year old stalker has announced.

Despite the professional respect he has earned in his 14 years at Moorfields Hospital in London, Allen said that he feared work was getting in the way of his relationship with Clegg's wife Miriam Gonzalez Durantez and their three children, making his position "untenable."

"Some people are able to juggle busy professional lives with [someone else's] private lives, and all credit to them," Allen told reporters yesterday from his car outside the Cleggs' home. "But I personally feel that I'm neglecting the important things in life, like [watching the Deputy Prime Minister] taking the kids to the park, or spending a relaxing evening [two tables away] in a nice restaurant."

The stalker was unavailable for further comment, having slid down in his seat to avoid being seen by Gonzalez Durantez as she stepped outside to do the recycling.