YOU wouldn't think there'd be much cause to highlight the joys of sitting under a tree.
But the arguably chilled practice could soon become illegal.
There I go, exaggerating again. Invited to construct a pudding, I lather it with so many eggs that innocent nibblers faint clean away from cholesterol poisoning.
The truth, loosely defined, is this: a cooncil in yonder Englandshire has been ordered to remove all park benches underneath trees, in case a branch falls upon the citizenry's nappers.
You say: "It's yon health and safety gone mad again. Or is it political correctness that does that?" It's both, madam, but in this case the former. Generally speaking, my undergarments remain untwisted by outrage about health and safety. I'm sure it's heinous, but I distrust the sort of person who bangs on about it.
You know: the yomping, let-the-children-leap-ravines types. It's Daily Telegraph territory, a world of armchair danger, advocated by the bulging of eye.
All the same. Crawley Borough Council has been told by health and safety officials to remove benches from underneath trees. That's the rumour anyway. There's some talk of being misinterpreted but, certainly, a residents' association that wanted a circular bench under a tree has been sent homeward to think again.
And the local Tory MP has claimed he'd heard all benches downwind of foliage were going to be removed. So it probably isn't true.
The tougher among you might say: "Who cares? You don't need a bench to sit under a tree." This is arguably correct. If you've buttocks about your person, you may deploy these. But you risk alighting your tender cheeks upon ants, dog poo, or wartime ordnance. Personally, I'd prefer a bench. In the meantime, it's maybe best just to stay out of the park.
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