Sunday, 23 September 2007

Pounds, pints and a personal vendetta

Christopher Booker in the Sunday Telegraph:

Last week I reported how, two days after the media had been claiming victory for the Metric Martyrs and that Brussels had reprieved pounds and ounces for ever, council officials and police officers again swooped on the Hackney fruit and veg stall run by Colin Hunt, one of the original "martyrs", to seize his "illegal" non-metric scales. Because this did not suit the media's new "narrative", only the local paper bothered to pick up the story.

Visitors to Ridley Road market might be surprised to see how many other stalls, mostly run by members of "ethnic communities", are selling in pounds and ounces without Hackney council taking any action.

The body that supposedly oversees enforcement, Lacors (Local Authorities Coordinators of Regulatory Services), has issued a "Con-cordat", stating that the law must be imposed impartially.

But instead of insisting on a policy of non-discrimination in Hackney, Lacors has circulated a leaflet personally attacking Neil Herron, director of the Metric Martyrs Defence Fund and Mr Hunt's champion, for claiming that he had "saved the crown on the British pint".

Since Mr Herron has never made any such absurd claim, one must ask whether it is the role of public officials to pursue what appears to be such a scurrilous personal vendetta.

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