Lucy Vickery

Spectator competition winners: how to write a resentful note of departure

Credit: Lebrecht Music & Arts / Alamy Stock Photo

In Competition No. 3331 you were invited to write a resentful note of departure on behalf of a well-known figure from the field of fact or fiction.

This challenge, set some time ago owing to seasonal production deadlines, was prompted by Suella Braverman’s splenetic broadside, but I decided to widen the brief beyond the political sphere. You duly cast your net far and wide, choosing subjects who ranged from Trollope’s unctuous, scheming curate Obadiah Slope to Nellie the Elephant.

Alan Millard’s Revd William Spooner
earns a commendation: ‘Where is the hind kelp when needed by poor souls like me? Sadly it has been limply sacking from those who should cow more share for their staff. I therefore design as of row with little regret…’. As does Basil Ransome-Davies’s Kissinger and Russell Chamberlain’s John Lennon.

The prizewinning entries printed below net their authors £30 each.

Disappointed to have stay cut short – dashed inconvenience – exemplary house guest – Stately Home – magnificent tidying-up skills – emptied fridge, Bollinger – wine cellar, Bordeaux – expensive affair, that – wrong bed, 2 a.m. – enraged duke – plastic doll, punctured – national scandal – monarchy threatened – should Jingle be blamed? Slid down banister – natural high spirits – dog, landed on – Truffles, Crufts winner – tail askew – most injurious – happy disposition and no tail to show it with – boa constrictor in parlour – bravely decapitated, egg scissors – snapped fangs like twigs – family pet – how could Jingle know? – toilet clogged – curries, lots – priceless Ming vase – large umbrella – crash – knock – vase in smithereens – glue in my portmanteau – repairs effected – given best bedroom – dark, spooky – candle left burning – towering inferno – excellent insurance company – ordered off property – farewell song offered, musical, Julie Andrews – auf wiedersehen – wrenching display – floods of tears, pleadings to remain – affecting, very.

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