Olympic mascots Wenlock and Mandeville have become the front-runners in the Labour leadership race. ‘This pair of strange, amorphous, genderless beings are exactly what the party needs,’ said acting leader Harriet Harman, ‘they add colour, diversity and a touch of magic to the leadership campaign.’

The shiny, one eyed mascots launched their bid for the Labour leadership at a school in East London where, like all the other candidates, they proceeded to stand there, flap their arms around a bit and say absolutely nothing.

‘Wenlock is probably favourite to take the post having had greater experience in foreign affairs,’ said BBC political editor Nick Robinson, ‘however, many people believe that Mandeville looks cuter and could be more fun.’

Despite being related, both mascots have pledged not to criticise the other. ‘Wenlock and Mandeville love each other very much,’ said their mother, Lord Coe, ‘and they will compete fairly for the Labour leadership, very much in the Olympic tradition.’

The support for Wenlock and Mandeville is seen by many as a direct response to the recent decision by the Conservative Party to adopt their very own fluffy mascot, Nick Clegg. ‘The Labour Party clearly needs a mascot of its own,’ said Lord Mandelson, ‘especially one that I can climb inside and operate myself.’

The arrival of Wenlock and Mandeville has raised expectations that other ‘dark horse’ mascots may also throw their hats into the ring. Other laughable candidates include a running, jumping Big Ben, a giant spinning teapot and Ed Balls.

Lord Mandelson rejected suggestions that the Labour Party might be resistant to another one-eyed leader: ‘They may only have one eye,’ he said, ‘but Wenlock and Mandeville have a singular vision for Britain.’