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“See it. Say it. Sod off.”


Returning from a recent trip to Barcelona, says Charlotte Gill in The Critic, “I was struck by the number of nanny-state posters at Stansted Airport”. Signs warned me not to “abuse staff”; advised me that train doors “close 30 seconds before departure”; reminded me how to board an escalator. Imagine arriving in the UK, giddy to see Buckingham Palace, only to be hit by a barrage of signs telling you “not to stare at or touch others”. You’d be insulted, “before concluding that we’re a nation of freaks”. That’s my main gripe with these silly posters – that they’ll put people off coming to a country that “needs all the tourism it can get”. What’s more, they never attack the real perpetrators of hostile behaviour on public transport, such as those who “eat tuna or make loud phone calls before 9am”. My message to the “naggy state”: “See it. Say it. Sod off!”