Thursday, 1 March 2007

Interesting Celery Fact No. 5

Between 1978 and 1981, the Chesham and District Conservative Ladies Association embarked on an escalating campaign against celery. Initially, the vegetable was banned from Association meetings, on the grounds that it was crude and ribald in shape, and ought not to be seen in public. After a while the Ladies Association decided that it was their responsibility to protect the public at large from the evils of celery, and so was launched the infamous, and increasingly extremist and brutal, Celery Limitation Subcommittee.

The CLS, as it became known, started by writing to local groups, progressed to picketing greengrocers and salad bars, and by the end, were thought to be behind acts of violence and intimidation towards local market gardeners. Much of the suffering could have been avoided, except that the local council followed a policy of appeasment, resulting in a ban on celery on all council premises, and local bye-laws being passed to prevent the eating of celery in public.

Eventually, an enquiry by the City of London police force revealed that the local police were too cowed by the CLS to interfere, and that the shadowy group was carrying out vigilante attacks on local celery eaters. Their web of informants had spread fear throughout the area, and there were reports, never confirmed, that they were planning an attempt to overthrow the government, and put in their own anti-celery administration. Today, the ringleaders remain behind bars, pending a Truth and Reconcilliation project.

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