Manners Maketh Man

Stevie’s miffed. He says:

“I was accosted in the Greenwich Park tonight at closing time.

Let me clarify that remark. It was 9.15pm and I was sitting at Woolfe’s statue when the outsourced security van with responsibility for closing came on to that area at speed and it’s horn beeping loudly and repeatedly

BARP BARP BARP BARP BARP BARP BARP!!!!! THE PARK IS CLOSING. YOU MUST LEAVE …. THE PARK IS CLOSING – LEAVE NOW … BARP BARP BARP BARP BARP BARP BARP BARP! THE PARK IS CLOSING. YOU MUST LEAVE …. THE PARK IS CLOSING – LEAVE NOW

The tourists scurried away obediently while the locals exchanged remarks about what a rude way it had been to spoil the end of a lovely evening.

Is this the norm at closing time? And is it appropriate? Of course it isn’t. Actions like this harry locals and visitors alike in a dreadful way.

Where’s the moderate tone of ‘The park will be closing shortly. Please make your way to the exits. Thank you.’?

The Phantom is with Stevie here. Manners Maketh Man, as I discovered was my school motto, though only after I’d left (dodgy comps don’t tend to do mottoes very well. Apparently there was a school song too. I never did find out what that was. The theme tune to Only Fools & Horses, perhaps…)

I assume Royal Parks believe that if they’re not aggressive about it then no one will take any notice (or maybe it’s the closest the guy driving the van gets to Absolute Powerrrr) – but surely they can add the odd veiled threat – (extremely polite and in hushed tones, natch) – something along the lines of “We are slowly closing each gate – when the last one is shut, we release the dogs…”

Any of us who have been caught like this will know it’s a horrid way to end a lovely evening. Royal Parks, eh. Whatever happened to Court-esy? Not, of course, that Henry VIII would have allowed serfs like us in his park anyway…

What would be the recorded message YOU would megaphone-out to the dirty stop-outs who just won’t go home? Or should be we just tug our forelocks and be grateful we’re allowed in the park at all?
The photos, by the way, are from Stevie’s Greenwich Park Flowers collection…

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