One of my neighbours has applied for a tree preservation order. The council have said that it would not be possible to put one in place because they have no money left. "Try again in April", they said.
There's a bit of pattern here isn't there, what with the NHS closing down in the first part of the year too? Now, I know someone who reckons that there is a bit more to it, and what actually happens is that the public sector all decamp somewhere sunny for the winter to spend all the bloated payrises that Blair has given them. It's not a view I subscribe to though.
If public sector closedown is going to be a feature of life in the future, we need a name for the time when it happens. The time when you don't want to get ill. The time when there's nobody there to help. When all the public servants are resting because they can no longer do their jobs. I think we should call it the sleeping quarter.