Hazel Potter provides the background. Vote at the end
This week the BBC gave rare airtime to a Prof-Vicar discussion, managing to squeeze in Trollope (who, we wonder, would be Borchester’s Mr Slope?), Lenten penance, the Passion Play and a bit of gardening for good measure. But while Alan’s plans to burn the 2013 Palm Sunday crosses for the purposes of “the imposition of the Ashes” (a form of seasonal branding it appears) are mildly interesting, and his faux pas in suggesting the Centurion at the foot of the Cross could sing a ditty with a lapsed Catholic in the Passion Play has comic potential, it was the discussion on Jack Woolley’s bequest that caught the attention.
The bequest is a stained glass window for St Stephen’s and Alan confessed that he was unsure how to handle the decision on its design. Jim’s suggestion that benign dictatorship would be better than democracy went down like a lead balloon with the Vicar, although you can see his point when you’re dealing with throngs of Archers and Aldridges. Jack had said that he wanted the window to commemorate home front workers in WW1 and while the locals will all want that to be the farmers (preferably the rich ones rather than the tenant variety) Alan pointed out that Jack was originally from Birmingham. Apparently Jack’s Aunt Susannah was one of the first forewomen, and as the discussion moved on to other wartime work carried out by women, Jim suggested a socialist realist mural.
Apart from the remarkable lapse from the BBC to allow “socialism” to be spoken on air (albeit with a reference to Stalin designed to scare listeners off) the subject is worthy of some discussion. Jim and Alan have come up with the idea of getting local schools involved (is this rigged for Choirboy-elect George Grundy?) but surely much better to ask Ambridge Socialist readers what they would like to see: