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Thursday, May 14, 2009

Turning the house upside down

The Mitfords: Letters Between Six Sisters is full of laconic zingers. Last night I was reading about the occasion in 1972 when Chatsworth House got a bomb threat. It promised the bomb would go up in half an hour. One of the house guests went and moved their new car to make sure it wouldn't be affected by any blast. Never mind the Velasquez, thought the Duchess Of Devonshire. They evacuated the house and rang the police, who arrived twenty minutes later.
"Do you want us to search the house?" they asked.
"It may take you more than ten minutes," she said.