Written by Roy Turse
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Topics: David Cameron, fag, eton

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

image for Cameron: "I had the odd fag at Eton"

David Cameron has admitted to having the odd fag at Eton. Fagging is no longer practiced in Britain's public schools, but was a system where younger pupils were required to act as servants, or fags, to the older boys.

Now, Mr Jeremy Sniverley-Mincing who was at Eton during the late seventies has come forward to explain what fagging was all about.

"It was mostly harmless," he said, "Although it seems a bit strange in this day and age. I remember when Farquarson Minor needed a fag to blow on his tea. He would open the window of his attic room, raise his top hat and shout 'Boy Plum Poodle'. All the first years would run across the quadrangle and drop their trousers. The Fag-Master would inspect them with a magnifying glass and then send the most well-endowed three boys up the stairs where they would have to wrestle on the refectory table. Whoever won was then allowed to slap Farquarson's todger with a ruler and the other two would knit a hat for Matron."

Mr Sniverly-Mincing went on to describe other strange practices such as 'oiling the prefect' and 'riding the bursar'. He had fond memories of having to warm the toilet seats when he was a fag. "We were lucky," he explained, "Because before 1972 the seniors would sit on your lap and do their business between your legs. Still it was all character-building stuff, and it made me the man I am today."

Mr Sniverly-Mincing is a civil servant and lives with his elderly mother in Surbiton. Although he didn't know David Cameron at Eton, he said he was a little surprised by his recent comments as fagging had been stopped in 1980, before Mr Cameron was a senior.

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