Cerca Articolo

The Chief Mouser


The title of Chief Mouser to the Cabinet Office has only officially existed since 2011. The incumbent, Larry, is a rescued stray cat who was employed after rats were reported crossing the steps of 10 Downing Street.
There has been a resident cat in the English government since the 1500s. In 1929, Peter was the first to really distinguish himself in the position, holding it throughout the Second World War. His successor, Peter III, became a celebrity in the 1950s, appearing regularly in the press. Peta was the first female cat in the role. Chosen from a diplomatic home rather than adopted, and given a salary increase, Peta was nevertheless considered lazy, noisy and was not toilet-trained. Wilberforce, known as the best mouser in Britain, replaced her in 1973.
Humphrey, who served under Margaret Thatcher, did not get along with Cherie Blair, Prime Minister Tony Blair’s wife. Whether an allergy or poor hygiene was to blame, there was no cat in Downing Street for a decade. In 2007, Sybil, named after Sybil Fawlty from Fawlty Towers, moved in — but not for long. Amidst questions over her loyalty to the English government, she returned to her native Scotland, leaving the post vacant until Larry was employed.