Anorak News | By George!

By George!

by | 31st, March 2004

‘THERE are some lunatics in this country who want a statue of Steve Thoburn, the so-called Metric Martyr, erected on the fourth plinth in London’s Trafalgar Square.

Prototype of Metric Martyr statue

He is, they argue, a true British hero for refusing to sell his bananas from his Sunderland market stall in kilograms and grams.

And his untimely death earlier this year is, by the same logic, no doubt the responsibility of those bungling bureaucrats in Brussels.

Now, they have a new champion in Tony Bennett, the 47-year-old publican who rode to Norwich magistrates’ court yesterday on a scooter made up to look like a dragon and flanked by pub regulars dressed as knights to protest a decision not to grant him an hour’s extension on St George’s Day.

The Telegraph explains that the magistrates had granted extensions for Chinese New Year and American Independence Day – but said April 23 was not recognised as special in law.

Now, one does not have to think Al Murray’s Pub Landlord is a dyed-in-the-wool liberal to spot the absurdity of this situation.

And yet more absurd was the magistrates’ decision that Mr Bennett could get his extension if he dropped the name of the patron saint of England from his application.

Instead, he was told to call it a charitable event – and to pay over all the proceeds from the extra hour at the Otter at Thorpe Marriott to a good cause.

And what better cause than the campaign to have The Metric Martyr’s statue erected in the middle of London, a banana in one hand, a set of imperial scales in the other.

Cry God for Steve, Tony and St George!’

Posted: 31st, March 2004 | In: Broadsheets Comment | TrackBack | Permalink