at the Rayleigh Conservative Club

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It costs nothing but creates much;

It enriches those who receive without impoverishing those who give;

It happens in a flash but the memory of it sometimes lasts forever.

None are so rich that they can get along without it,

None are so poor but are richer for it’s benefit.

It is rest to the weary, sunshine to the sad,

And nature’s best antidote for trouble.

It cannot be bought, borrowed or stolen

For it is something that is no earthly good until given away

And when it is given away; it always comes back;

And nobody needs a smile so much as those who have none to give.


Scared of Santa? Then you've got Claustrophobia! ...and other gloriously daft definitions from 40 years of radio's I'm Sorry I Haven't A Clue.

The Uxbridge English Dictionary is the silliest dictionary in the world. Compiled from over 40 years of Radio 4’s quiz show I’m Sorry I Haven’t A Clue, it reveals alternative meanings for everyday words with rib-tickling results. Here, Harry Mount picks his A-Z of the funniest entries... 

Scared of Santa?

Part 5

Silicone — Madonna’s bra

Snuffbox — Coffin

Specimen — Italian astronauts

Spinach — Irritation caused by sitting next to Alastair Campbell

Suffocation — A weekend in Lowestoft

Taffeta — A cannibal with a preference for Welsh people

Tangent — Dale Winton

Template — The secretary hasn’t turned up

Tenure — How they describe a decade in the West Country

Thatcher — Used to be married to that Sonny Bono

Thinking — A young Elvis

Tombola — Man who throws cats

Tyrant — Angry reaction to having to wear a tie

Uganda — Go and have a look

Unfettered — Without Greek cheese

Unilever — A stick for getting students out of bed

Vaccinate — To administer drugs with a Hoover

Vigilante — An old relative who stays up all night

Wagtail — Coleen Rooney’s biography

Wallaby — Someone aspiring to be a kangaroo

Walnut — An obsessive bricklayer

Weight-machine — A Southern Rail train

Welfare — Blonde, innit

Witchcraft — Magazine for boat owners

X-ray — A former fish

Yeoman — Presidential greeting (after George W. Bush’s matey comment to Tony Blair)

Zucchini — An animal park enthusiast

Adapted from The Complete Uxbridge English Dictionary by Tim Brooke-Taylor, Barry Cryer, Jon Naismith and Graeme Garden, published by Preface Publishing at £14.99. © Graeme Garden and Jon Naismith 2016.