CLIVE SMITH: Crushing the spirit of free enterprise '“ at the age of five

Remember those halcyon summer days when kids set up stalls outside their homes and sold home-made goods to passers-by?

GOLDEN Johanna Konta at Wimbledon
GOLDEN Johanna Konta at Wimbledon

Those heady days could be at an end though. They certainly are in Tower Hamlets where a five-year-old girl was recently fined £150 for selling home-made lemonade to people on their way to a nearby festival.

Unlicensed lemonade is obviously a bigger threat to the world than Islamic extremism, nuclear holocaust and Kim Jong Un’s hairdresser – so throw her in the Gulag for 10 years’ hard labour!

Just the other day customs intercepted 10,000 gallons of highly concentrated lemonade at Liverpool docks with a street value of £950. Officials said the purity was the highest ever recorded in the British Isles and it’s only a matter of time before we start seeing lemon overdoses.

If council officials wanted to crush any future ambition the girl might have had, they’ve probably done it. Damn her and her capitalist ideas.

When someone young shows a bit of entrepreneurial flare it should be encouraged not trampled out of them.

It’s a young girl selling a few glasses of lemonade for God’s sake, not some Del Boy operation flogging dodgy perfume down the market from a battered old suitcase.

I’m sure Tower Hamlets has got bigger fish to fry and more important problems it should be tackling, but that wouldn’t be politically correct would it? It’s much easier to go after a soft target.

Imagine being such a bureaucratic jobsworth that you’d actually think this would be a good use of your authority, and then turn up mob-handed with four enforcement officers!

I know rules are rules but I’m sure common sense could have prevailed. Maybe they could have taken her dad to one side and had a quiet word about getting a permit.

I know the fine has since been rescinded, but that doesn’t make the fact that it was dished out in the first place any better.

Are councils now just employing mindless drones who can’t think for themselves and don’t care for their community?


The National Union of Students has put forward a motion that clapping should be banned from all future NUS events... because it excludes deaf people!

This is not a joke.

Someone has actually dreamt this up.

There’s always something that this lot are trying to ban.

These so-called bright minds raise the bar every time with their stupidity.

I’m sure it must be something they serve in the beer at the student union these days.

Why don’t they ban sight because it excludes the blind, or movement because it excludes the paraplegic?

In the future it will just be the guest speaker talking to an auditorium of empty seats... with only the low hum of the air conditioning unit showing its appreciation.


Johanna Konta – Hungarian parents, born in Australia, represented Australia until 2012 and honed her tennis skills as a youngster in Barcelona – the new golden girl of British tennis!

Yes, she became a British citizen because of the time she has spent in this country, but really she’s as British as an old forgotten can of Castlemaine XXXX.

It’s a bit much tennis commentators and the media comparing her to Virginia Wade. It’s not like a girl from Barking is doing well for her country is it?

It’s all rather embarrassing if you ask me, that as a country we are so desperate for successful individual sportsmen and women that we have to start claiming people as our own when quite clearly they’re not.