I worked for some years in a quite northern office. So very different to what I’d been used to as a ‘soft southerner’ as my colleagues tagged me. In fact for almost my entire tenure of that export secretary post, they called me “hey, London! ” in the mistaken belief that anyone with a clipped very ‘Queen’s English’ accent would naturally be from London. They were wonderful fun and something that has stayed with me since, they were very much cleaner, tidier & disciplined to work with. Absolutely no eating food of any kind in the office, or anywhere else that wasn’t the canteens . . . They had a strong belief that any food scoffed at the desk would automatically entice mice and other vermin. The cleaning lady would start in my office and woe betide me if I’d been found to have any crumbs about the desk! Everything was cleaned and polished to within an inch of its life, even my huge typewriter – the keyboard was cleaned every night. The respect between colleagues and cleaners was immense, they ruled & I’ve never enjoyed office life as much since!