The Oldie

County punchlines

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SIR: I was delighted to see the photo of Barbara Pym outside her cottage in the Oxfordshir­e village of Finstock and to learn what fun Barbara and her sister Hilary were as young women (Prue Anderton, Literary Lives, January issue). I am not surprised; when I spent a brief period in Finstock twenty years ago, I met Barbara’s sister Hilary at a supper party. She asked me if I lived in Finstock or in the neighbouri­ng (and rather prettier) hamlet of Ramsden. She said it was important to know as ‘one meets one’s friends in Ramsden and one’s servants in Finstock’. To this day, I don’t know if she was joking or being serious. Kathy Walton, Chorleywoo­d, Herts

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