Come on in and draw up a stool, mine's a pint.
"Country entrepreneurs" are to be trained to give black, Asian, disabled and young people a warmer welcome. The move is part of a £25 million campaign to persuade these groups to visit rural areas after Countryside Agency research suggested that they feared exclusion from close-knit communities.
£25 million! How do I get some of that? It is the old story if you respect the locals then they will welcome you, whoever you are; if you parachute your views and attitudes in then there may be a small hint of frost in the air.
I wonder if there are similar grants to make us country boys welcome in the big cities. Last time I was up in the smoke it cost me a lot of money following that nice ladies advice of how to make myself more comfortable.
I was talking to old Don in the pub about how we only had a few non-whites in the village nowdays and he recalled how there used to be more blacks in the village when he was young, and that they looked lovely in livery. And that he wasn't alone in having a young black boy as his best friend in those far off halcyon days, tickling for trout, stealing apples, all the usual stuff boys used to get up to, in fact it fair broke his heart when they had to sell him....