Ooh, it’s been Controversy Corner here for the last couple of days. To keep the momentum of well-mannered disagreement going, tell me what you think about this. Admittedly, it’s not in the same league as the previous issue, but it could still lead to fisticuffs at dawn depending on your viewpoint.

This evening I was with a very old friend (she’s my age, I mean we’ve been friends 20 years) and she told me that two friends of hers shoot squirrels in their back garden. They wait until their daughter is in bed and then they go outside and gun them all down.

I was horrified.

Call me a lily-livered pansy and/or a Buddhist (neither would be a million miles from the truth), but squirrels are (a) great (b) cute (c) harmless. Surely?

No, the trigger-happy couple say, they are vermin. They strip bark off trees. They must be DESTROYED.

But no… no, surely not? They’re excellent assets to any garden or wood, because they tidy up all the discarded conkers. And they’re very clever too. The ones in Russell Square are so used to people, they’ll wander right up to you and stare at you to see if you might be concealing acorns about your person. That enhances any urban bench experience.

The ones round my home make me happy on a daily basis, just bobbing around the trees and nibbling snacks with both hands. They’re part of the ecosystem. They don’t invade our homes or attack us. They’re fluffy. What’s not to love?

Reader, are squirrels expendable vermin or valuable wildlife? You tell me.