Christopher with his trusty arranger
A quick update on the attempt by Christopher Harris to persuade Woodstock council to abandon its requirement that ‘all interments [of ashes] … must be arranged by an approved professional firm’
We foregathered in the council chamber. Green baize-covered table, mace thereon, oil portraits of worthies from various lost ages, Union Jack, evening sunlight streaming in, mayor with a Funeralworld capo’s chain, framed photo of the Annigoni portrait of the queen, noble fireplace, cabinet full of pewter plates — in short, a scene from Dad’s Army. Proceedings began with no preliminary welcome from the mayor and no explanation of the democratic process as it operated in this chamber. Half the council members sat with their bloody backs to us. It was the sort of event that makes tyranny look terribly attractive.
Chris spoke very well in the teeth of a stentorian countdown from the mayor – “One more minute.” If the councillors listened they did so in a way different from you and me. They then voted to go into confidential session to discuss it all… and that was that. No news of a decision has come through today. We are none the wiser.