I’m thinking of changing my name by deed poll to Whingeing Wood. This is pretty much the trend nowadays following in the footsteps of that deluded harpie Mrs Watson-Smith who has adopted the Christian name of Peta and duly got herself elected onto the ruling council of the RSPCA.

She advocates that everybody should become vegan, has likened livestock farming to the holocaust and has scientific evidence that those who hunt are prone to inherit delinquency and sadism. Yet surprisingly, 22,000 members of the charity have decided that she has the right ideas to take the RSPCA forward. It beggars belief and to top it all, Dan Lyons, another candidate of dubious credentials, will sit alongside her. He proposes that all pet owners be required to take an exam and that “non human animals” be represented in parliament – presumably by a rat that has learned sign language. I believe the charity may have to change its name to the Royal Society for Promotion of Crackpots Anonymous. A shame really, because those inspectors who don’t believe themselves to be policemen are quite decent people and doing a very useful and necessary job.

Trauma is defined in the dictionary as a “morbid condition of the body induced by an unpleasant experience.” A friend of mine, who I regularly meet at Ashford Market reminded me that the four most common causes of trauma are: 1, getting married; 2, getting divorced; 3, moving house; and 4, finding that your favourite beer is no longer being served at your local pub.

Now I have experienced numbers one and three. Management is happy to admit number two is unlikely, but having recently sold the local pub in which I was a shareholder for 17 years, it is quite possible that number four is on the cards.
I have recently spent a length of time in the company of the NHS and it is really quite alarming how vast a proportion of the support staff are on the large side, yet few if any, of the front line workers look anything other than healthy. Given that the NHS is perpetually short of money I suggest they have a hard look at the biscuit budget. We are extremely lucky to have a national health service but without doubt the number one area where the service can be better financed is through cost saving. I have seen the waste at first hand and it is colossal.

While on the topic of public sector workers, research has shown that their employees are 24% more likely to be off work than their private sector counterparts. Could it be the fat arses eating all the biscuits or is working for the local council more debilitating than working for a private company? Oh, and by the way, sickness payments are usually given on full pay and for a longer period than is available to the rest of us.

I am looking forward to the Ashes, but not being a subscriber to Sky, I will only be able to read about it. How refreshing it was to witness, albeit at second hand, the spirit in which the recent series against New Zealand was played and the tremendous cricket that ensued. The Aussies appear to have come over with the intention of curbing their verbal aggression and allow the bat and the ball to do the talking, but I fear their instincts will overpower them in the end.

Finally to farming. The lamb trade is very disappointing, but I am afraid there is no way round supply, demand and the strength of the pound. Beef is showing signs of recovery on the back of low supplies, pork is on the up for the same reason and the cull sector remains in a very healthy place. Having missed snooker for two weeks I am a bit low on the prospects for cereals but I guess it is not looking good.

Let us wish for a decent and easy harvest for whichever sector of the industry you are in.