OUR man in Westminster, Sir Charles ‘Chatty’ Chatterton, the long-serving Member of Parliament for The Tittlehams and Assistant Under Secretary at the Department for Transport, has released his annual Christmas message to his constituents.
My Dear Friends
As we enter the season of goodwill, I write to thank you for the support and inspiration, that you, the good people of Tittleham, have given me during this difficult year. Since my last communication I have been extremely busy on your behalf trying to fix some of the holes in the rather leaky ship of state, not to mention those on the B7492.
I regret to say that as a junior member of the Transport Ministry I was given two invidious tasks at the recent climate extravaganza that took place in Scotland. One was to ensure that there were enough diesel generators available to recharge the electric milk floats used to transport the celebrities and panjandrums to and fro. The other was to liaise with airports in the area to find spaces for the hundreds of private jets that were used by the climate crusaders.
As you no doubt expected, the whole thing was a washout. It was embarrassing to see old Sharma blubbing into his microphone at his belated realisation that the whole shebang had been a futile waste of time and money. I must say the last time I cried was when I was three, and Nanny quite rightly confiscated my father’s Purdy as I was taking aim at our manservant, Jenkins.
You may have heard about the conflab surrounding a fellow Member who was hauled over the coals for allegedly asking questions linked to a company from which he was being paid a consultancy fee. I always thought of him as a decent cove and sound over Brexit, but he had no option but to fall on his sword. Apparently, the firm he works for sells those gizmos that are supposed to tell you if you suffer from the bat flu. I have to admit that many of my colleagues are rather too close to those making fortunes from the flu panic. I must say that the rot set in in 1912. Before then only men of substance who were genuinely interested in the wellbeing of the country could afford to enter parliament. Now, I regret to say, the place is full of mountebanks, chancers and shady fellows on the make.
You will be reassured to know that the only lobbying I have done in Parliament has been on behalf of the excellent Tittleham United Breweries’ Merry Badger IPA. I am delighted to say it is now served to great acclaim in all the bars in the House.
On a happier note my secretary, Catherine, and I recently returned from a Parliamentary all-party visit to the Canary Islands to investigate the devastation and destruction caused by the erupting volcano on La Palma. From our base in Tenerife, we were able to hear first-hand accounts from some of those who had been made homeless by the relentless flows of lava. I am assured that nothing like that is anticipated for our neck of the woods, but were it to happen your representative would stand ready for action to preserve our beautiful countryside and help divert the flow in the direction of Exeter or some other large conurbation.
Notwithstanding the distress of the homeless denizens of La Palma, the most unedifying sight on the trip was seeing two Scottish Nationalists and one Socialist Member having to be ignominiously carted off the plane on invalid chairs. Those who cannot hold their drink should never be allowed on these visits.
On Christmas Eve, Lady Veronica and I will be attending Midnight Mass at Saint Ethalwald’s in Tittleham-in-the-Marsh, hoping that the Reverend Slope avoids the temptation to clap and keeps his sermon below the 30-minute mark. Afterwards we will celebrate the coming of our Lord and Saviour with a flagon or two of Stag’s Horn at the Drunken Ferret. As is the tradition, the first round is on me, and my dear wife will be providing delicious mince pies prepared using Mrs. Beeton’s Tasty Pastry Recipes for Aged Gentlefolk.
My advice for 2022 is to save yourself some money by not watching the bilge on live television and not buying any newspaper, except for the wonderful and independent Tittleham Clarion and Bugle (edited by my son in law, Montague Spittle-Gollup). All the news that is fit to print is to be found there and on the outstanding TCW Defending Freedom blog. To keep happy and healthy I also suggest that you avoid large towns and cities, Guardian readers and vegans.
May the spirit of Christmas sustain you all in the coming year.
Your humble servant,
Sir Charles Chatterton MP