• Charli


I’ve just read yet another ‘National’ survey awarding prizes to the ‘best fish and chip shops in Britain’. Out of the top 16 only one was based in Scotland – a country with a proud history and culture of fishermen.

I am sure that Cromer’s in St Andrews is excellent but I can’t believe that the judges genuinely trawled high and low on these Scottish Isles.

I would like to see a definitive list of all participants in such a survey in order that we truly know the depth and breadth of the research.

I write a weekly LBD email to about 30 friends and colleagues with hints and tips on regular exercise, eating sensibly and maintaining a healthy lifestyle. I make reference to a wide variety of websites and news articles and am very selective about what I share. I certainly couldn’t begin to signpost the LBD Club followers onto a particular site and declare it as the best, as there are an infinite number and to attempt to do so would ultimately be futile because they are updated so often – renamed, rebranded and removed.

It pays to be selective about so-called surveys and not to take everything at face value.

Several years ago I read the result of a survey in a monthly glossy magazine about how foreigners, now living in Britain view their British neighbours. Views ranged from ‘incredibly friendly’ to ‘rude and unwelcoming’. It wasn’t until I had closely scanned where these incomers were living that I was able to understand why there was such disparity of opinion. Basically the respondents to the survey either lived in rural England – Sussex, Surrey, Kent or urban London! So there was no balanced view on Britain at all – it was all based in the South East.

Watch and listen to the ‘British’ news, views and weather and you will see just how skewed it is towards the South.

Of course, when sports enthusiasts are surveyed, all of a sudden the top Scots athletes – Sir Chris Hoy and Andy Murray are as British as the next man and readily adopted by the wider UK population.

Surveys – a poem

Take my word unflinchingly living here is great –

a picket fence, a gravelled drive and five bar gate.

Don’t think about the busy-ness of the daily commute

or the seventy plus hours at work to pay for designer suits.

A rural haven a distant loch with access all around

you can have so much of this for the same British pound.

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