Professional controversialist Rod Liddle writes this week in the Spectator of the decision to allow Sir Martin Sorrell, uber ad-man and boss of WPP, to carry the Olympic torch on its trip through Redbridge on 22 July.
Liddle writes that he has been trying to find ways to taunt the “lower orders” about their lack of wealth recently, and says:
Nothing I have come up with, however, quite beats the decision to let Sir Martin Sorrell â€” one of Britainâ€™s richest people, and a brave and stoic defender of enormous salaries and bonuses for people like Sir Martin Sorrell â€” carry the Olympic torch through one of the countryâ€™s most deprived boroughs, Redbridge, while presumably cackling to himself. The torch is meant to be borne aloft by unsung commoners, of course; ordinary people who have not been extravagantly rewarded in a financial sense. The sort of people who do not, when they divorce, bung their ex-spouse two parking spaces at Harrods worth Â£200,000 on top of the Â£20 Âmillion or so, just to keep her sweet.”
Apparently the only Wanstead resident to carry the torch is teacher Luke Williams, who told the Wanstead Village Directory: “I am overjoyed that I will be running within my home borough â€“ Wanstead is a quaint and beautiful gem, where village meets city all in one place. I urge residents to maintain the quiet, serene atmosphere of the area and not to take our town’s unique characteristics for granted.”
Update, 15 July: Wansteadium reader Michael Proulx writes:
“Not the only Wanstead resident.