Having organised a barbecue weeks back - on the advice of our esteemed weathermen - and having picked up the sausages and burgers from my local butcher and organised the booze, I watched in horror as the black clouds gathered. Amazingly, however, I managed to find the one day of the week in which the rain failed to arrive and we even had some sun!
The weather has certainly called into question our meteorologists' abilities to predict long-range forecasts. I also doubt their abilities at short-range forecasts; it's probably more reliable to ask your granny if her rheumatism is playing up.
Of course, we would be foolish to plan our businesses too closely around the witchcraft, I mean science, of weather forecasting. But it would be nice to have a more reliable steer on what's coming up.
Earlier in the year, butchers up and down the country were rubbing their hands in delight as the boffins predicted a summer of barbecueing. However, that promised land of sun and frolics has so far failed to materialise, and the weathermen are now starting to back-track and hedge their bets for the rest of the season. Here's hoping they'll be just as wrong and start predicting rain, but in the meantime, butchers will have to get creative and find other ways to pull in the punters - either that, or start selling gazebos for the die-hard barbecue fans out there!
Meanwhile, I'm delighted to announce we've extended the deadline for our Butcher's Shop of the Year competition (see page 10) and would urge all of you to get working on those entries and send them in.