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Tales from practice | We call them chaps

New requirements imposed by Whitehall bureaucrats in ?the name of the nation’s safety will suck the blood out of ?local life in villages across Britain, says Richard Barr

6 July 2012

“Chaps” is no part of my normal vocabulary, any more than char or chum or even chump, yet our vision of the listeners identified them quite firmly as chaps. Men from the Ministry sitting in their tweed coats and cavalry twill trousers probably with flat caps on their heads – certainly when they went outside to smoke their pipes. If you saw them together you would probably use another word I do ?not: prats.

I remember on one occasion having difficulty hearing what a client said and asking if she could use her land line as the mobile reception was so poor.

She said: “I am talking on my landline but I thought you were on a mobile”.

I said: “If you are listening chaps, could you please make less noise about it as we cannot hear ourselves speak.” Instantly the line went quiet...

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