Foolishly, in an attempt to remove some confusion i was having over my email clients, i ran the commands:
sudo apt-get purge thunderbird*
sudo apt-get purge evolution*
Unfortunately this has backfired somewhat as i now dont appear to have gnome panel installed. I can reinstall that easily enough, but im also wondering what i else i might have deleted by running these commands?
** EDIT **
I also appear to have lost the me menu, as well as the session manager applet. They are showing as being installed in synaptic, but they dont show up in the list of applets to add to the panel.