But Larry is not the only working cat in London; Hackbridge Station has acquired a feline stationmaster of sorts. The cat has recently been turning up to oversee the platform at the Wallington station, much to the befuddlement of commuters. Mr Relf, editor of Farmers’ weekly, a periodical specialising in bottom problems, said: "There I was, dashing platform-bound through the waiting room, when what should I see? A cat…other people on the platform were similarly surprised.” Indeed they were, and according to Mr Relf this astonished bewilderment at seeing a cat in a public place had a mysterious effect on the morning commute.
"We did that rarest of things for train travellers near London - we started talking to one another. ‘Where does it come from?’ we asked. ‘Does it live in the station?’ ‘Look,’ one person said, not quite believing their eyes, ‘a cat.’"
“Touch me, madam, and I’ll sue”
In the unlikely event that people could somehow one day come to terms with the astounding sight of seeing a cat – yes a cat! – at a train station, perhaps they could become accustomed to dog commuters. Jack Russell terrier Frankie caused rather a stir when he decided hop on the train at Gravesend, Kent to seek his fortune in London. The cheeky canine was unsuccessful in his search for gainful employment when he was cornered by a jobsworth train manager before he got to Kings Cross and sent back home. The plucky little dog has been forced to join some internet employment agencies instead.
One dog that is certainly earning his chum is stupid-looking Labradoodle Cooper from Worcester Park. He acts as chief taste tester for his owner Vivian Nutt who has started a company pointlessly manufacturing dog treats that are also edible to humans. Talking of how the business began Ms Nutt said: "The treats I used to give [Cooper] were really smelly and horrible, so I started making my own. As far as I’m concerned, if I wouldn’t eat it, I wouldn’t expect my dog to eat it.” The mad-as-fuck doggy baker continued by barking "What I’d really like to do is to have a dog cafe."
“I’m not eating this shit”
Of course, not all of London’s animals are helping the economy; some are a ruddy menace, like urban foxes for example. When they’re not spreading the contents of our wheelie bins across the pavements on bin day, or doing pointy, foul-smelling shits on our vegetable patches, these ginger menaces are attempting to ruin sporting events. They allegedly chewed cables, wrecked microphones and soiled the podium area of the shooting venue of the London Olympics. A solution to the problem was not found, despite the fact that there were dozens of Olympic standard marksmen wandering around with their guns for large parts of the day. Perhaps they should have employed guard dogs.