THE CRISP REPORT.  Hutchinson, 1981

Hardacre said, ‘It is twenty one years since the Lady Chatterley’s Lover trial Heralded the permissive society.  We at Barfords think it is high time someone in this country came up with a progress report on the current state of British mores'.

This was a job for the new Special Projects Manager, Simon Crisp.

It meant not just a 15% rise in salary, a larger office, and a secretary of his own, but a unique opportunity to take a close look at the soft underbelly of the consumer society.

As Crisp points out in a letter to Angela Tuckerman, his ex-girl friend in San Francisco, ‘It is, after all, the duty of every intelligent, responsible citizen with the slightest claim to a social conscience to acquaint himself with every aspect of modern life…  My real concern is that my friends – and, more importantly Mother – should not get hold of the wrong end of the stick.’

From the massage parlours and porno cine clubs of Soho to lunch with Fiona Richmond and an evening with the mysterious W.B.Yeats Appreciation Society of Ashford, The Crisp Report explores avenues where no decent man has ever set foot before, and comes up with some astounding – not to say hilarious – revelations.



His report on the state of our permissive society is even funnier than dear Frank Longford's. Philip Howard, The Times


Christopher Matthew has a  good, deadpan style, and the progress of his inadequate rake is told neatly and with panache. Selina Hastings, Daily Telegraph


Matthew's best yet. Punch