Monday, February 03, 2014

Dr Sarah Wollaston calls on Tory women to boycott candidate selection

We have heard for quite a few years - from Parliament in general and the Conservative Party in particular - that the Church of England has some kind of problem with women. With little understanding of church history and what many believe to be immutable theological qualifications, politicians tend to lecture the Established Church as though it were a wholly secular entity if not a constitutional adjunct to the Cabinet. Only a year ago the Prime Minister exhorted the Church to "get with the programme" on gender equality, despite women in his own Cabinet being well below parity.

There is currently some internal Tory dispute in the constituency of Thirsk & Malton, which has resulted in the deselection of its sitting MP. His Grace doesn't have a clue what's going on, but whatever it is (and here's a clue), there is no evidence at all that the problem with Anne McIntosh MP is that she is a woman (the local Association did, after all, freely select her).

But that hasn't stopped her friend Dr Sarah Wollaston believing that it is. And so she has written an open letter to the nasty Thirsk & Malton Conservative Association to express her views:
Dear Thirsk & Malton Conservatives,

My name is Sarah. I am 51 years old and I love the Conservative Party but I don’t like that there are more men Conservative MPs and barely any women Conservative MPs.

Today I went to Parliament and saw MPs in two sections the girls poised and polite and the boys gruff and raucus. All the girls did was sit on the green benches, make speeches about women's rights, and gossip about breast feeding, and they had few Cabinet posts but the boys went on adventures, worked, saved people, and had lots of Cabinet jobs, even became Chancellor of the Exchequer and Chief Whip.

I want you to make my friend Anne McIntosh the next Conservative candidate for Thirsk & Malton and let her go on adventures and have fun ok!?!

And if you don't I will scream and scream and scream and tell all my girl friends to boycott your selection ok!?!

Thank you.

From Sarah
His Grace apologises: he may have that letter a little confused with the one sent by 7-year-old Charlotte Benjamin to Lego, complaining about the lack of girl figures:

His Grace does not know Anne McIntosh: she may be perfectly charming, diligent and hard-working. But some of her local Tory association clearly find her “divisive”, “non-communicative” and “bad-mannered”, and so they wanted rid, and did so democratically.

This wasn't some executive cabal of a dozen anti-McIntosh zealots: the vote went to the entire local Conservative membership - some 560 people - and the turnout was 88 per cent. And Anne McIntosh lost. So her friend Sarah Wollaston has tweeted to her sisters, exhorting them to boycott the selection process, thereby gifting the seat to a male candidate.

This strikes His Grace as a little childish (not to say self-defeating for the Feminist cause), but Dr Wollaston clearly feels strongly about losing her friend from Parliament because she wants to see more girl people in Parliament so they can go on adventures.

It is sad that a local Conservative association is not able to exercise its democratic right to deselect a parliamentary candidate without being accused of misogyny. But that is where we are: if you want to deselect a gay MP for being “divisive”, “non-communicative” and “bad-mannered”, you're obviously homophobic. If you want to deselect a black or Asian MP for being “divisive”, “non-communicative” and “bad-mannered”, you're manifestly racist (if not '‘Islamophobic'). So it stands to reason that if you want to deselect a woman MP for being “divisive”, “non-communicative” and “bad-mannered”, you're simply sexist.

Why doesn't the Conservative Party just "get with the programme" and convene a CNC (Conservative Nominations Commission) at CCHQ which can deliberate in secret and appoint all of the party's candidates? Until then, they could at least ensure that women are present on all the big adventures, if only as observers. Local democracy can be awfully belligerent and inconvenient, and, as Plato observed, the Guardian class obviously knows what's best.


Blogger John Thomas said...

What a pity they can't select candidates without knowing their (I'm old-fashioned, I use the old, real, English) sex (to me, "homophobia" means "fear of likeness").
Well, soon there's an election coming up, and if only the good people of Britain, whatever their ... men or women, stayed in bed, hands in pockets, then we might get rid of ALL of them [oh - that implies wearing conventional clothes in bed ... mmm ...].

3 February 2014 at 10:53  
Blogger The Explorer said...

"More men" suggests to me a slight majority.

"Barely any women" suggests to me a significant minority.

So who/what is filling in the gap?

3 February 2014 at 11:15  
Blogger English Pensioner said...

Perhaps she should put her name forward for Tim Yeo's constituency in Suffolk where the Conservatives are also trying to de-select their sitting MP.
The proposal that women should boycott the vote hardly shows logical thinking, unless she believes most women are like my wife who would always prefer a male candidate

3 February 2014 at 11:30  
Blogger Uncle Brian said...

The news item in the Telegraph (linked to in His Grace's post) mentions only a single objective criticism of Miss McIntosh: she missed a Commons debate on broadband speeds. All the rest is just adjectives, "divisive", "non-communicative", and so on.

Somebody is clearly being extremely economical with the truth, presumably on both sides of the quarrel.

3 February 2014 at 11:41  
Blogger Busy Mum said...

I have always found that women who achieve anything purely on merit, without playing the feminist card, are hated by women who have no other cards to play. Feminism is woman's worst enemy in that it alienates men and gives a lot of mediocre women an inflated view of their own abilities.

Has the House of Commons improved since the number of female MP's has increased? - not in terms of family-friendly working hours etc but in terms of integrity, statesmanship (statesman as in the generic term for human beings!)and all those other intangible qualities that should be found in Parliament. I don't think so.

3 February 2014 at 11:44  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

I think Charlotte's lego letter is rather good, and written from the heart. Is the other one real or a spoof? If real it is very crass, and the prose style is juvenile.

I think it is a bit retarded to think that a person's gender affects their ability to debate on the floor of the House of Commons or look after their constituents either way. I am not impressed by women who would prefer a male candidate. Is that a handsome male candidate that they can dream about? If so what has romantic attractiveness got to do with the job? If you are in trouble and need the help of your MP will good looks help you? Some of the problem is with how shallow and unconsidered people allow themselves to be. And sometimes women allow themselves to prefer a man because the man is not competition. That is called envy or the avoidance of envy, and is an umworthy motive.

It should be the best person for the job, and it is odd how very many times that they consider that to be male. It should be what is in the head and the soul of the person, plus their energy to get things done. The reasons for trying to deselect her seem feeble, but then broadband can be make or break for small businesses. It would be interesting to know her reasons for missing the debate and whether or not she voted. The problem can be that people sometimes have reasons that must be kept confidential.

I would think given the evidence of the proportion of women MPs made to sit on the floor (although looking very uncomfortable, & some in high heels and tight skirts) in the latest picture of conservative MPs that there is an institutional bias against appreciating women and treating them in a gentlemanly fashion in the Conservative party. I could but will not speculate on some of the reasons for that. To be fair a picture of synod would not do that to their women.

3 February 2014 at 12:25  
Blogger Sally Roberts said...

I think His Grace rather misses the point - which is that Ms McIntosh was judged by standards which many (Sarah Wollaston included) felt were not being applied to many of her male colleagues.

There are plenty of Members of Parliament who are men who are bad-tempered, divisive, non-communicative etc. etc. etc. who have never, ever been challenged let alone suffered the punishment of de-selection. This double standard is just plain wrong.

3 February 2014 at 12:31  
Blogger Archbishop Cranmer said...

Dear Sally Roberts,

His Grace thanks you, but the point-missing is manifestly yours, especially in the context of the current Blunt/Yeo disputes. These alone refute your assertion of the Tory men "who have never, ever been challenged let alone suffered the punishment of de-selection". Others include George Gardiner and Anthony Meyer (..both men).

There are indeed "plenty of Members of Parliament who are men who are bad-tempered, divisive, non-communicative", but the point is how many of these express it rather gruffly to their loyal association members? An MP should always keep on good terms with his or her local chairman and executive.

There is no "double standard" at all. And there has certainly been no cry from the friends of Yeo or Blunt for others to "boycott" selection processes.

3 February 2014 at 12:43  
Blogger carl jacobs said...

Sally Roberts

Who performed the judgment? Was it not her own constituency? You seem to be saying that a majority of the 88% that voted applied a double standard. It would seem Ms McIntosh had alienated a sizable portion of her own voters. Or are the voters simply sheep to be lead by the party establishment?


3 February 2014 at 12:46  
Blogger Lucy Mullen said...

Voters are definitely not "sheep to be led by the party establishment" but neither should deselection processes be entered into lightly. I don't know whether or not this lady has been so bad tempered so often that the majority are reasonably offended, or whether she has offended 2 or 3 who have then spread dissent around and canvassed support. Experienced canvassers are one thing in a General Election, but another entirely different if they are cheesed off. And people are so often swayed by the last person who spoke to them, (& in that sense are like sheep) that she cannot simply rely on being in the right, that is if she is, and we don't much know!

3 February 2014 at 13:12  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...

Busy Mum

"Feminism is woman's worst enemy in that it alienates men and gives a lot of mediocre women an inflated view of their own abilities"


3 February 2014 at 13:57  
Blogger IanCad said...


Dr Sarah Wollaston is a perfect example of a somewhat dopey MP whose priorities all fall in behind her feminist/equality agenda.

Why is she not leading the charge to reimburse her constituents the seven million pounds wasted on the Dartington Primary School?

This absolute fiasco; surely the definitive example of criminal incompetence, can only be rectified by the demolition of the soggy remains of the idiotic design.

How come she isn't going after the insurance outfits who indemnify the architect and contractors who, in league with the LABC, have fleeced her constituents?

I seriously wonder whether democracy actually works when the people perish for lack of knowledge.

3 February 2014 at 13:58  
Blogger David Hussell said...

I know nothing about this internal spat.

However I know that democracy will not be revitalized in the UK until the power to select and de-select, within all parties, is firmly in the hands of the local associations, again. A top down approach is the antithesis of our British democratic system. It is a pretty obvious point really.

Busy Mum and Phil Roberts are spot on the money with :

"Feminism is woman's worst enemy in that it alienates men and gives a lot of mediocre women an inflated view of their own abilities"

Well said both. Advancement by merit is the only system that commands lasting respect.

3 February 2014 at 14:50  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

Doesn't Call me Dave want rid of her, it wouldn't have mattered if she were a he I don't think because he wants to install one of his cronies as Con candidate there instead and that is what's wrong as HG says in his way in his last paragraph.
I hope UKIP will be fielding a candidate there!

3 February 2014 at 14:57  
Blogger Phil Roberts said...

"And if you don't I will scream and scream and scream and tell all my girl friends to boycott your selection ok!?!"

My daughter who is 4 uses the same strategy it seems.

At least we now know that quality arguments will be used so the Association better get their thinking caps on to find good responses and counter arguments

(Is she really a Dr?)


3 February 2014 at 15:22  
Blogger Elwin Daniels said...

Louise Mensch worked out well, didn't she?

I'd rather vote for David Silvester.

3 February 2014 at 15:23  
Blogger David Hussell said...

Marie 1797 @ 14.57

Interestingly Ukip's policy of strict selection on merit is quietly encouraging a number of very able women to rise in it's ranks, which is the way it should be. I'm not going to produce a list as that would not be fair on those I simply haven't come across. However party conferences support the point. I am all for the organic approach and not foisting any big change on anybody, unless absolutely necessary.

To answer your question I have no idea whether Ukip will target the seat. It will depend mainly on whether there is a very good local candidate or not, and what the chances of winning would be. Resources have to be applied very tactically.

3 February 2014 at 16:07  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Happy Jack would reply like this:

My Dear Sarah

Thank you for getting in touch and sharing your opinions of the grown up world of Parliament. It must have been quite a shock visiting the Houses of Parliament and I trust you were able to find a sweet shop.

It is good you love the Conservative Party. What a shame that you don't like it that there are more men in Parliament than women. When you get a bit wiser you might understand the reasons better.

Yes, its true, girls do tend to be more interested in their appearance and boys more outspoken. This is because girls and boys are different. And it is a pity there are not more girls of better ability that are chosen by the Party to stand for Parliament. This is decided by their local Party and they have to be able to get along with the members there. As you say, girls do tend to talk about breast feeding and women's rights a lot, and some have a tendency to sulk when they don't get their own way.

It is a good thing there are boys willing and able to do all the hard and difficult jobs that come with running a country. It is not all about adventures and when you are more mature you will understand this.

Unfortunately, your friend Anne needs to learn to get on with people a bit better. All the foot-stamping in the world from you or her will not change the decision of her local party members not to put her forward as their candidate.

You can scream and scream and scream away and tell all your girl friends to do whatever you want. Meanwhile, the grown-ups will continue to behave in ways suited to our responsibilities.



3 February 2014 at 17:03  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

3 February 2014 at 17:28  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Goodness! There is a local issue at the heart of this: Ryedale District Council have been trying to sell off an area of land in the centre of Malton that was willed to 'the people of Malton' in perpetuity - it is currently used as a car park and where the annual fair is held. Selling off the land is very VERY unpopular amongst local residents who do not want a supermarket in that area (ASDA are interested in buying it, amongst others). The beef is that Ms McIntosh has been totally silent and uninterested, thereby tacitly approving the council's plan. It is also felt that Ms. McIntosh is not a good constituency MP. So...democracy has been invoked and she has been deselected - end of.

3 February 2014 at 17:34  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

PS tried to delete first posting (with spelling mistake) but it won't let me...

3 February 2014 at 17:39  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Mrs P - right click on the icon and then open in a new window. Even Happy Jack ha worked this out.


3 February 2014 at 17:43  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

A dignified raise of an eyebrow is the best this man can do for Sarah.

Perhaps after her spat, the old girl can get back to making jam for church bazaars, and knitting booties for disadvantaged babies, and leave her pals constituency membership to democratically select whom THEY think should represent them, not her. There’s precious little left these days for an ordinary member to participate in, in what is now the queer pandering, London orientated, pro EU, un-conservative Conservative party. Don’t take their choice of candidate away from them as well…

3 February 2014 at 18:10  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

I say Archbishop, you seem to have convinced some that your mock letter utilising tantrum as used by a small thing was actually sent by Wollaston…

Good Lord, man, one doesn’t know whether to laugh or cry…or both…

3 February 2014 at 18:13  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Dear dear Happy Jack, you naughty saucebox! I did click on the icon and yes, another window appears, but there is nothing to click on that new window that gets rid of the bally thing!

3 February 2014 at 18:22  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

Never did understand this quota business requiring so many women, ethnics, etc for candidates. Damnable rot, you know, with more than a touch of the bolshevik about it…

Rather like putting forward a synthetic to vote for, not a flesh and blood real human being whose candidacy was assured by them being considered the best hope for success. The best Conservative in the village, if you will.

Why an individual’s genitals need to come into consideration just shows how corrupted our tired democratic process has got. It’s so bloody unclean when done that way, don’t you think !

It might be an idea to make it law that ONLY the local association gets to select its candidate, and NOT have anyone imposed on them by Central Office, or influenced by meddlesome women in parliament of whose business it is most definitely not !!

Tally Ho !

3 February 2014 at 18:23  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

Mrs Proudie – click on icon, find message, left click hold on mouse on screen then drag down to view delete option...

3 February 2014 at 18:27  
Blogger Integrity said...

Your Grace,
I'm not at all sure about this process of local selection. In theory it should be good to have a person of your choice at a local level. However, you and I both know that it just does not always happen like that. So often a different candidate is forced upon the local association by Central Office.
If this was an employment issue, then the sitting MP would have to go through the full dismissal procedure and may be able to claim for unfair dismissal.
I would have expected that great consideration should have been given to maintaining the sitting MP, rather than the uncertainty of another candidate, even if he is an Eton buddy of the PM in a fairly safe seat.

3 February 2014 at 18:34  
Blogger Integrity said...

Inspector out of the Ordinary;
Once again you come up trumps in the IT department. Didn't you say once though that at your work you had to rely upon the corporate IT?
Maybe you are at work as a Mole for the bosses, testing the patience of the techies, let alone the Saints?

3 February 2014 at 18:39  
Blogger Marie1797 said...

I would think that area would benefit from a UKIP representative coming along with a strong message to sweep up whilst the local Con club are squabbling amongst themselves. It is rather
cliquey up there and conservative but people are disillusioned and as Mrs Proudie discovered don't want the place covered in supermarkets, it's picturesque.
Not having a UKIP every constituency is denying people the chance to vote for a fresh start and common sense.

3 February 2014 at 18:40  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Dear Mrs Proudie, Happy Jack removes his hat and apologies. The advice Jack offered always works for him. Are you sure you followed it properly?

Jack will go through it again:

Right click on the dustbin.
Then 'open link in new window'. Then scroll down to the delete button.
Push delete button.

3 February 2014 at 18:43  
Blogger Integrity said...

Dear Mrs Proudie,
My sincere consolations. How many times have I had that same inconvenience. I even tried using the screen zoom so that I could see the delete button.
I'm sure it's all a test by his grace as to ones competence to write on his esteemed blog.
My most embarrassing moment when I mixed up Tome with Tomb.

3 February 2014 at 18:44  
Blogger Integrity said...

Dear Jack,
Do you think that procedure might work with other peoples comments?

3 February 2014 at 18:46  
Blogger Old Blue Eyes said...

Surely the body that selected her has every right to de-select her if, in its opinion, she is found wanting. The fact that they selected a female in the first place gives a lie to the accusation that there was a feminist angle to the decision.

3 February 2014 at 19:14  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Inspector @ 18:13

I assumed a genuine letter had been sent, which His Grace had parodied by drawing on Charlotte and Violet Elizabeth Bott.

I was making my own joke about transgender issues, but I see now it wasn't very clear.

3 February 2014 at 19:29  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

"Sisters, sisters
There were never such devoted sisters,
Caring, sharing
Every little thing that we are wearing
All kinds of weather, we stick together"

Except, last year when Ms Anne McIntosh claimed female doctors are a drain on the NHS because they will end up having families and want to work part time.

Ms McIntosh's comments angered her feline sisters.
Ms Sarah Wollaston said she disagreed with her sister's comments and Tweeted: "As a former job sharing GP who also managed teaching/training/examining/police surgeon/looking after 3 kids, I disagree with the 'Tosh"

Tosh?! And one wonders how her children faired and her husband - sorry, er, 'partner'.

And my, my, how very un-sisterly! Far better to keep one's poise and scream and scream and scream and then stamp one's little foot.

3 February 2014 at 19:51  
Blogger Mere Offscouring said...

Surely there are more women Conservative MPs and less discrimination now than there were thirty years ago when that bloke Thatcher was Prime Minister.

3 February 2014 at 20:23  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

Integrity @ 18:39. One is fortunate to be able to rely on a young Jezebel at work for keyboard tips...

Explorer @ 19:29. Not you at all Sir – you remain the keen wit we’ve come to expect.

3 February 2014 at 20:30  
Blogger non mouse said...

Gosh, Your Grace. Next we'll all have to screech "AGEISM" in response to the deselection of Mr. Yeo (@ 68 years).
Yeoh. Yeoh.

Also, I thoroughly support Lucy Mullen's comments about the deadliness of feminists - especially against other women who won't "take the whip"! The litany that includes "divisive”, “non-communicative” and “bad-mannered”,
is part of their management template --- they use the model in all walks of business. They think it's professional

And, as we know, if it doesn't fit the real person they target --- they'll make it so: by defamation and rigged evidence.

Thank also to Mrs. Proudie for her insights on the situation you've cited here.

Overall, we clearly need to engender change at all levels of public management. Personally, I'd like to see an end of the deceptive "Party System." In any case, may I take this opportunity to remind everyone of the inspirational Harrogate Agenda over on Dr. North's blog (EuReferendum).

3 February 2014 at 21:17  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Dear dear Inspector, thank you! I am all of a fluster as you can tell...having just got used to the magic lantern this Ethercloudbox contraption sometimes baffles me. Ah well, I followed your instructions and, as you can see, the message has now gone...poof! Speaking of which, Mr. Slope has been baking fairy cakes as a 'change' from my hobnobs...I will send you some.

3 February 2014 at 22:11  
Blogger Matt A said...

Happy Jack, could you write a reply to the lego letter?

3 February 2014 at 22:13  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

And dear Happy Jack, thank you too. Did you know there was an Egyptian deity called Happi? He had women's breasts and kept a harem of frogs... Well I suppose it beats stamp collecting.

3 February 2014 at 22:14  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Dear non mouse, I have to confess I was at The Old Swan Harrogate when the agenda was first thrashed out...Dr. North was most enlightening, and somewhat robust in his presentation I do recall.

3 February 2014 at 22:16  
Blogger Inspector General in Ordinary said...

Matt A. Allow the Inspector...

“Dear seven year old...”

No. Bless the young things as they enjoy their innocence, of which they will shortly be robbed of, thanks to the shite that is un Godly humanity...

3 February 2014 at 22:27  
Blogger Integrity said...

Your Grace,
I notice elsewhere that Mr Yeo admits that his support for Gay Marriage, the EU and climate change policy may have been responsible for his deselect ion.
No wonder Cameron did not want to lose him.
Is this the beginning of the end for the evil ones?

3 February 2014 at 22:48  
Blogger Integrity said...

This comment has been removed by the author.

3 February 2014 at 22:48  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Mrs P @ 22:14/Happy Jack

Did you know that Happi had two wives: the northern one a cobra, and the southern one a vulture?

With a domestic setup like that, I can imagine I'd be chasing after frogs myself; or a harem of stamp albums.

Jack: just imagine a harem of Mrs Proudies!

3 February 2014 at 22:51  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Matt A

Dear Child Charlotte

Thank you for your letter.

Before playing too with Lego and worrying about what boys and girls do, I think it best if you spend a little bit more time on your reading and writing.

This will help you be a good mother and wife when you grow up. Just think, you will be able to help your own children with their home work and also help your husband by writing letters for him and running the home while he goes to work. And if he ever goes into politics, you can be his secretary.

When you do have time to play with Lego, the girls can do whatever you want them too.

Be a good girl now and work hard at school.

From Lego


3 February 2014 at 22:53  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Before playing too much with Lego ....

3 February 2014 at 22:55  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Mrs Proudie, Happy Jack can assure you does not have women's breasts - at least not his own. And a harem of frogs? Too risky kissing them as they could turn into princes or, worse a Slope type!


Jack looked up that false god Hapi and you had a Pee to many!

3 February 2014 at 23:05  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Mrs P @ 22:14

With built-in attributes like that, he must have been able to entertain himself for hours.

No wonder they called him Happi.

3 February 2014 at 23:13  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Explorer, Happy Jack is not sure what you mean. Could you explain?

His name was "Hapi" - one pee - and he had a big belly and a small loin cloth too.

3 February 2014 at 23:28  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Dear Lego

I think it so unfair that you only have boys and girls in your Lego sets. It is so homophobical. (I think that's what my mummy and mummy called it).

Everybody should be free to look at their own gendericals and sexualical options. It is not right for you to have just boys and girls. This is not the way it is in the real world and it is stereotipicalising. My mummy and mummy say I must explore all this for myself and so does my school, but how can I if your toys are so conventionical?

Please include a multi-coloured person so that I can play with boys, girls and all others.

Thank you so much.

Peaches and Cream

4 February 2014 at 00:53  
Blogger Manfarang said...

There are attempts to deselect a PM who is “divisive”, “non-communicative” and “bad-mannered” in my part of the world.Well not too bad mannered.

4 February 2014 at 03:26  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Jack @ 23:28

I'm sure Mrs Proudie would be hapi to explain it to you. (Since she initiated the topic in the first place.)

4 February 2014 at 06:57  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Dear Jack, when one has reached middle years and have spend many hours on your knees in freezing cold cathedrals, a pee too many is unavoidable...

4 February 2014 at 08:59  
Blogger IanCad said...

Jack, @ 00:53

Thanks for getting my day off to a good start.
I had to smile.

You're right; she needs to work on her writing.

"Gendericals" I must remeber that.

4 February 2014 at 09:16  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

My dear lady Mrs Proudie, Happy Jack says you should be relaxing with your feet up sharing the occasional hobnob with your good Bishop. Let Slope be your proxy kneeler from here on in.

IanCad, Happy Jack suspects there was adult influence behind the letter from Charlotte to Lego. In Jack's experience, a child would seven would have been more careful about errors and would have re-written it.

Glad the letters made you chuckle. Jack does wonder how youngsters are coping with the secular models of men and women being marketed these days.

Explorer, Happy Jack is much too polite to ask Mrs Proudie such questions. She is a role model of all that is descent and honourable about the fairer sex.

4 February 2014 at 12:32  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Dear Happy Jack
"Let Slope be your proxy kneeler from here on in"

One 'r' too many, perhaps?

4 February 2014 at 18:17  
Blogger Happy Jack said...


4 February 2014 at 20:55  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Mrs Proudie

I hope Mr Slope doesn't read Cranmer.

4 February 2014 at 21:04  
Blogger Happy Jack said...

Explorer, from what Happy Jack understands, Mrs Proudie's comments, Slope is way too busy making fairy cakes and out exploring the back passages and alleyways of Barchester to read a blog.

5 February 2014 at 00:21  
Blogger The Explorer said...

Nice one, Jack!

Mrs Proudie wouldn't understand, of course; but I have no intention of explaining it to her.

5 February 2014 at 09:04  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Goodness! Dear dear boys, you are lovely the pair of you! Mr Slope is a firm believer in muscular Christianity and spends long hours in the changing rooms of Barchester Rugby Club offering succour to the hearties. He says this outreach brings many a manly soul into the warm embrace of the Church, not that I have seen many of them turn up on Sundays for matins.

5 February 2014 at 20:30  
Blogger Mrs Proudie of Barchester said...

Martin Vander Weyer has written a piece about Mrs McIntosh's de-selection in The Spectator if any one is interested...

6 February 2014 at 21:23  

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