Speaking from his garage in his North London home Ed made this emotional and extraordinary apology "There's no easy way to say this: I made a pledge to keep the hamster, I didn't stick to it - and for that I am sorry. When you've made a mistake you should apologise"
Ed continued, "I know know that I shouldn't have made the pledge to my daughter to buy the hamster. In retrospect I can see that it's a promise we couldn't stick to. It smelled awful, shat on the rug and kept me awake at night. I'd also overlooked the financial situation at the time - do you know how much hamster food costs? £1.40 a bag, that's how much. I've got better things to spend my money on, a £438,000 second home in Stoke Newington for one. I've met people about this issue and many of them are disappointed and angry."
Mr Balls' daughter for one was said to be 'fucking furious'. Speaking from outside her school gates Miss Balls, age 6, elaborated, 'Apart from the first week, I was pretty indifferent to the hamsters existence. I didn't even notice it had gone, but I'll tell you one thing, I bloody well loved him (or her).'
The new owners of the hamster, Mr and Mrs Pickles were coy on the whereabouts of 'Freddy' although the couples cat had a twinkle in its eye an was said to be in fine health.