The conurbations of England may have seen its share of troubles of late, with hoards of the great unwanted roaming the shopping arcades and retail boulevards, on the look out for a free take home treat of a flat TV or DVD, but an altogether quieter revolution has been taking place, out of site and out of mind to all but those in the know.
Along the shady lanes and soggy edged playing fields, the length and breadth of England's greener and pleasanter land, another, altogether more orderly hoard, have been roaming the back lanes and bike tracks like locusts of ancient Egypt-land, devouring all before them in an attempt to supplement their supermarket sought sustenance.
Blackberries, apples, pears, even quinces, a fruit usually left on the bough for the more eager home preserver, have been stripped, plucked, pulled and ripped from trees and shrubbery all across the land.
Gone are the days of the casual Sunday afternoon blackberrier, now it is big business on a household scale in an attempt to make ends meet.
One little old lady, who didn't wish to be named, said 'Piss off you nosey bastard, it's fruit, free fruit. Have you seen they are actually selling blackberries in Tesburys and Sainco's? I can make a free blackberry and apple pie out of this lot and stick the rest in the freezer'
Another old gent, out walking his dog early one morning, was spotted chucking a stick up into a nearby tree. Our reporter asked if he was attempting to dislodge the apples to take home for a tasty crumble, he told our intrepid hack 'No you daft bugger, I'm training my dog to go up and get the apples for me, now piss off and leave me be!'