Ian Freud - 'Knackers to you'

Joined on 12th December 2010

Lord Commander of the Scrolls and leader of the Knights Templar (Yorkshire West) and benign dictator of this site. I invented the harpsichord and was the first person in Europe to practice capoeira. In my spare time, I eat cheese and cultivate oysters. 



  • "OK - bragging time. I had the school record conker back in '84 or so. My brand spanking fresh conker had only registered its first win over a similar newbie when it was drawn across the legendary 111-er owned by farmer boy Buttsy. The playground held its collective breath as Buttsy took first strike, his mighty conker swinging fast and accurate to my untested chestnut... before suddenly bursting asunder on contact. I was carried aloft from the playground and hailed as a demi-god by my peers until other attractions drew the limelight away from me. Probably a girl, I imagine. Happy times." - on Conkers
  • "The horse chestnut tree is such a feature of life that I genuinely had no idea that it wasn't a native tree. (More from the Woodland Trust). That's really startled me today, but I look forward to boring people down the pub with that fact - much as I like to bore them with news that the rabbit is a non-native species." - on Conkers
  • "I can well imagine. By then presumably it had a much smaller number of patients than it was designed to hold and probably chronically underfunded as a result in terms of upkeep and general buildings maintenance. Must have been a lot of empty wards with those huge, high Victorian ceilings. There's a reason these places get chosen for filming zombie films." - on Colney Hatch Lunatic Asylum
  • "Hi Clive. Yes, I've just been reading Duncan Campbell's 'Big Brother is Listening', which dates back to the 70s and even then there was concerted, heavy duty comms tapping. Of course the step change now is technological reach - which puts pretty much ALL communication within listening distance. I'd be fascinated to know more about how things worked in the pre-digital era." - on ECHELON Surveillance System
  • "The important thing though, John, is do you have any spiders!" - on Do conkers keep spiders out of the house?