The way we were in the Isle

Colin Ella. Picture: Liz Mockler E0858LM
Colin Ella. Picture: Liz Mockler E0858LM

In my boyhood days doors were often left unlocked, windows were open through the night: factories, shops and businesses did not need to spend thousands of pounds on security systems: schools, parks and public facilities in general were rarely vandalised and the elderly were left in peace.

I remember reading about a shop in the Scilly Isles where the proprietor was rarely to be found on the premises. Customers simply wandered in, picked up whatever they wanted and then wrote it all down in a notebook left on the counter. This business could go on for weeks on end but eventually the shopkeeper got around to squaring things up and debts were paid and accounts cleared.

There used to be quite a lot of that kind of trust in many of our shops, although perhaps not on the same generous scale as that Scilly business.

And what of today? It is surely a sad reflection on the progress of society to see the huge proliferation of security systems now blanketing houses, offices and every sort of industry. Properties bristle with the elaborate sophistication of ultra sensitive alarms, snoop cameras, CCTV, radar traps and light up systems.