When the weather’s nice, my dad and I like to take a walk around the country lanes of Denmead.
It’s not only to let Sunday lunch go down – we sometimes put the world to rights too.
The fact of the matter is there are people out there who think it is their divine right to dump their rubbish wherever they please, blighting a landscape that the rest of us love
Most of the time it’s a very nice way to spend an hour or two, wandering about the highways and byways of what seems like Hampshire’s most rapidly-expanding village.
But, increasingly, our lovely walks in the countryside are marred by the discovery of fly-tipped waste, just dumped by the side of the road or in a field because the owners couldn’t be bothered to take it to a tip.
Once an entire road was closed because tyres had been dumped across the middle of it.
Who would do that? Who would ever think that was an acceptable way to behave? The road was closed for days waiting for the council to clear it up.
Why someone didn’t ask a farmer to collect them and get the whole lot cleared up quickly is beyond me, but perhaps that would be too sensible.
The fact of the matter is there are people out there who think it is their divine right to dump their rubbish wherever they please, blighting a landscape that the rest of us love.
And it’ll get worse.
In less than two weeks Hampshire County Council will start charging for DIY waste to be taken to its waste recycling centres.
For most of us, that’ll mean we can’t take our plasterboard or rubble sacks to the centres at Havant and Port Solent, or the new one at Waterlooville, without incurring a charge.
I suspect the vast majority of us will either suck it up and pay the £2.50-an-item charge, or hire a skip, without too much whinging.
But there will be a set of people who will turn into our tyre-tipping waste-dumping friends, upending the contents of their flatbed trucks or estate car boots on public land, private property or, in fact, anywhere other than where they should be taking it.
And at what cost will that be to clear up?
More than £2.50 an item, I’d wager.
IT’S NOT THE CHANNEL CHANGE, IT’S THE SENSE OF BETRAYAL
I can’t really see what the Great British Bake Off fuss is about. Let’s face it, it’s not like when Neighbours moved from BBC One in the days when no-one could get Channel 5 without a snow storm unless they stood on their roof, waving their aerial.
Will any of us really give a stuffed crust when GBBO starts on Channel 4? Well, my boss will. She tells me that without the backing of the BBC, Love Productions would have had a show that would have collapsed like a soufflé, rather than a multi-million pound enterprise.
Perhaps that’s it – it’s not the channel change, it’s the sense of betrayal.
But you can’t have your cake and eat it, so Love Productions could end up weighing the cost of its decision to move.
TAKE YOUR CAT TO WORK TO SORT OUT THE MICE - A BRILLIANT IDEA
I had to do a double-take when I saw a report that Penny Mordaunt, Portsmouth North MP and Minister for Disabled People, Work & Health, was taking one of her cats to parliament to deal with a growing mouse problem.
My double-take turned into a double-check.
Sure enough, there on her Twitter account were pictures of her cat scouting out the nooks and crannies of the minister’s office.
This was presumably before being put to work in the lower ministerial corridor where the mice seem to be taking over.
I think that it’s a brilliant idea and a very inexpensive way of dealing with a tricky issue.
And Penny has enough cats to be able to feed them all on rotation.