Someone, somewhere had the idea that the English culture had changed. 'I know' said that someone. 'Forget the idea of not talking to strangers. Abandon the thought that the English hate being distracted from the task in hand when they are out and about. Perish the truth that the English dislike cold-selling more than almost anything in the world. Let's get some charismatic, young, articulate people to stand in the street and persuade, through sheer force of personality alone, folks to sign up to support a new charity.'
'Good idea,' said someone who couldn't have possibly known if it was going to work but felt there were insufficient clipboard-brandishers and Big Issue sellers on the streets already. And it was so.
Is it possible this can be deemed a one decade experiment? Some of the young people are quite pleasant and interesting. I'd like to meet them socially and buy them a drink. I do not take out direct debits to charities on a whim.