Nanny Knows Best

Nanny Knows Best
Dedicated to exposing, and resisting, the all pervasive nanny state that is corroding the way of life and the freedom of the people of Britain.

Wednesday, January 17, 2007


DummiesIt is reassuring to know, that as Babylon burns (so to speak), Nanny focuses her gimlet eye on the things that really matter.

To this end she has banned Sid and Alma from standing outside a Sidmouth lifeboat station.

Now, I hear you ask, who are Sid and Alma Ken?

I will tell you.

Sid and Alma are two life sized mannequins, who have been used to collect donations for a lifeboat charity. They have been dressed in full lifeboat uniform of life jacket and helmet, and each have a bucket for people to donate cash.

Sid and Alma have been very popular, and have managed to bring in around £15K each year.

The money funds the local lifeboat, the Pride of Plymouth.

Can you guess what the problem is here?

Yes, that's right...they don't have a licence to collect the money!

Some interfering busy body in December, with too much time on their hands (the sort of person who would have found gainful employment in the Gestapo) complained that they are collecting money illegally.

You see folks, anyone who uses a tin to accept money for charity in public needs a collector's permit from the local authority.

The busy body...let us hope that this person is never in need of a lifeboat..lodged their complaint with East Devon District Council.

Nanny's chums in the council, never ones to let common sense get in the way of the law, state that under licensing laws the mannequins may have to be removed.

Sidmouth Lifeboat secretary, Philip Churchill, thinks that this is a load of bollocks.


"The dummies are incredibly important to us

and provide a significant part of our income.

If they went, we would have extreme difficulties replacing that income.

We rely on these collections.

"Visitors have their photographs taken with them

they are a good tourist attraction

Seemingly East Devon District Council have nothing better to do than act as jobsworths, and are now using taxpayers' money to investigate whether the dummies are operating illegally.

Sid and Alma can apply for a licence. However, they would need to be over 16 and fill out a form with their name, address, phone number and date of birth.

They would also need a letter from their charity, confirming they are an authorised collector 28 days before they begin.

A petition to save Sid and Alma has been set up by the lifeboat station, you can sign it here Save Sid and Alma.

Feel free to tell Nanny's chums in East Devon District Council what you think of them, via this link: Dummies.

The list of councillors, and their email addresses, can be accessed via this link Dummy List.

Give them my love:)


  1. Anonymous12:17 PM

    It does seem rather stupid doesn't it.

    Of course one might also question the concept of an Island nation using volunteers and relying on cash collections to fund a large and important part of its maritime safety services ...

    I sincerely hope that the objection made to the council is from someone whose natural opinion is well in line with the majority of Nanny watchers frequenting your blog Ken.

    In terms of headline grabbing - a difficult thing to achieve nationally in these days of super spin stories - it has many good ingredients. Being naturally pessimistic about these things I doubt that the great majority will around themselves from their self inflicted media induced comas long enough to really spot the underlying message but the more attempts there are the more chance of success.

    It is, however, a pity we seem to have to rely mainly on chance for achieving public awareness.

    I strongly suspect that all such petty regulation should be challenged in this way if possible. Indeed should be taken to the most extreme cases imaginable in order to make a case for the stupidity. For preference that case would come from the very authorities who are being asked to enforce the rules and laws. So much more of a message that way.

    Local populations could then deliver their verdicts on the topic and the council spend to address it through local election voting. My guess is they won't care but it has to be worth a try.

  2. Anonymous12:21 PM

    Clearly that council has too many employees if it has time to spare for this sort of thing. Perhaps it shold dirtch a few and hand over their salaries to someone who can use them more productively - the RNLI springs to mind....

  3. Grant: "Of course one might also question the concept of an Island nation using volunteers and relying on cash collections to fund a large and important part of its maritime safety services."

    Actually this is rather how Nanny herself sees it. So many wonderful things have been done through voluntary activity - the founding of schools 'n' hospitals, paying for district nurses. They then get taken over by Nanny and that is the Kiss of Death. The lifeboats and the hospices are two institutions that still run themselves, and long may they continue.

  4. Anonymous8:16 PM

    Yet another case of some knobhead who is clearly getting paid too much for doing too little....

  5. Anonymous2:36 AM

    I have seen the term "jobsworths" used here quite often.

    Could one of you please explain what that means?

    I assume it's a polite term for "useless tit".


  6. Anonymous9:25 AM

    It comes from the expression "it's more than my job's worth" as used by government flunkeys when asked to apply the rules in a more considerate way. A very detailed definition is on wikipedia.

  7. Anonymous2:09 PM

    Not just government lackeys. Local government, quangos and other public funded busybodies have more than their fair share of pathetic little people, overpaid and underworked, whose only pleasure in life seems to be making life miserable for everyone else by implementing barmy rules.

  8. Anonymous11:40 PM

    Grant said...
    It does seem rather stupid doesn't it.

    Of course one might also question the concept of an Island nation using volunteers and relying on cash collections to fund a large and important part of its maritime safety services ...


    Better that the government run it...