Story Archive

The Zero Tolerance Mentality — U.K. Edition

Nev Cooper, 82 and retired from the Royal Air Force, loves boats. He built a 2 replica of a RAF Vosper crash boat and was about to sail it on its maiden voyage on a local pond in Bottlesford, Wiltshire. No can do, says the Urchfont Parish Council: there are ducks in that pond, and they “might” be scared by a boat in the water. However, they ruled, it’s still OK for children to sail boats in the pond. “Yes, they might fly off,” concedes Cooper, “but five minutes later they will be back.” Besides, he adds, “In the past I have found that the ducks even tend to follow these boats around.” Cooper says he might defy the order. “What are they going to do about it? The police would think it was a joke if they were called.” The council warned him in writing not to push it, even though “We accept that this is not enforceable by law.” Still, they “felt you would understand our position and act accordingly and reasonably.” (RC/Wells Journal) ...Why? They’re not.
Original Publication Date: 20 September 2015
This story is in True’s book collections, in Volume 22.

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