Baron Crapulence
The witterings of
Baron Crapulence of Chugley Harvard
As recorded by Felicity O'Toole
'Noblesse Oblige'

baron crapulenceummer is approaching or so it is rumoured. At this time of year people often ask me how the 'right to roam' legislation will affect me when it starts coming into effect this autumn. The answer is "not at all". If anyone thinks they are going to freely upset my game, trample my crops or interfere with my shoots or the hunt that I permit on my land they are in for a rude shock. What I don't understand is if these people want to wander all over private land why don't they go and buy their own? They could then wander all over it as much as they liked. If I find a dog worrying my sheep, that is, if I were to have any, I would be perfectly entitled to shoot it, whomever’s 'pet' it may be and I think that the same procedure ought to extend to people. Why people keep these animals that they call 'pets' that don't do anything is beyond me, all my dogs have to earn their keep be they Pointers, Retrievers or Rottweilers, otherwise why on earth would we want to waste our hard-earned money feeding them?

It's rather like all those silly protests about hermetically engendered crops or whatever they call them. We grew a trial crop a few years ago. This was some sort of government experiment. They paid us handsomely to grow it and we didn't even have to sell it. Griddle arranged it all, I leave the day to day running of Home Farm completely in his hands. A load of beardies attempted to destroy it one night but the alarm was raised and we let the dogs out, phoned Inspector Drab of the Affucton Magna constabulary and rounded up a posse of farmhands. Although the dogs know all the farmhands they did not always discriminate successfully between the rabble and Inspector Drab's body of men, which may have been a bit unfortunate on reflection, as we had to summon a couple of ambulances. I managed to calm Drab down a bit with a couple of stiff whiskies, and a word with Simon Cholmondely-Bibulant J. P., a close friend of mine and a local magistrate, the following day sorted things out. Drab gets a bit above himself at times. We all thought that the vandals would be severely dealt with in the Magistrate's Court, those that were not still in hospital at any rate, but they all elected to go to the Crown Court. This took an intolerable amount of my valuable time, as if I didn't have enough to do, and none of them were even incarcerated. In fact, as far as I can gather, they all got off scot-free, if you can believe it. Unfortunately I don't seem to have the influence that I would wish at Crown Court nowadays.

If farmers, or anyone else come to that, wish to grow new crops on their own land surely they should have the right to do it. The very idea of these loonies coming along and making their stupid protests only demonstrates to my mind that they are envious that they haven't got any land of their own, either. My advice to all these people is to work harder and invest more wisely. Then they can go off and do whatever they like on their own land and stop trying to prevent other people doing what they like on theirs. Of course if they do nothing but moon around all day except to negatively protest about anything of which their befuddled minds can think, they can't expect to ever get into that position. They have only themselves to blame.

Bowel LoosenerI was walking through the Nine-acre the other day. I don't get much time to walk around the Home Farm nowadays but the Nine-acre was always one of my favourite places as a boy. Of course we don't grow anything in it now, we don't seem to grow very much nowadays but the farm turns in a fair profit every year and I haven't yet needed to interfere much with my manager, Griddle; he appears to be a capable sort of chap. I know that there are many farmers pleading poverty nowadays but they are mostly sentimental chaps who won't adapt to the modern world. We sold our milk quota many years ago and got rid of all livestock except for my prize sow 'Lady Honoria'. My good lady wife was not too pleased that I named the pig after her, she doesn't always appreciate the accolade, women can be so unappreciative at times.

Last month I was in the West Indies. On arriving there I was disappointed to find that the chappie who was supposed to be looking after my luxury yacht had not really come up to scratch — there was dust all over the salon — so I naturally had to let him go and was fortunately able to get hold of a replacement almost immediately, and for less wages as it happens. It seems to be very difficult to instil into people that the only way to get on in life is to give a fair day's work for a fair day's pay.

I had to work hard to get where I am today. When I left University and got my first job, my father insisted that I should only be department manager in his business — he refused to let me on the board until I had been there three months. When my father died, may he rest in peace, I was able to put my degree in Economics into practice as I realised I could make more money by sacking all the employees and selling the property. Ha! My father missed that! All the old employees who came whining to me had only themselves to blame, some of them we had employed all their working lives, but were they grateful? Not a bit. If they had not spent all their wages in the four ale bar they would have been in a position to be independent and control their own lives.

To read the further witterings of the Baron click any link in the right hand panel

Comment on this story? Click the button to have your say Get it off your chest!
More of Felicity O'Toole's reportage can be found on The Interag
Story and pictures © 2004 - the interag. Site construction © 2004 - 2006



I: Noblesse Oblige

II: London

III: Cook

IV: Some Daughters

V: More about Cook

VI: A Cricket Match

VII: A brief engagement
and cider

VIII: Children Going and Not Going

IX: A Shoot

X: Christmas, Now
and Then

XI: A Night in Soho

The Watley Review