Ah, the art of dining…

The retailer is launching a Civilised Dining Campaign to protect the traditional British way of eating (and promote itself in the process).

“Using both a knife and a fork to eat has held this country in good stead for centuries. It’s one of the mainstays of being British,” said its spokesman, Ed Watson.

“It’s about maintaining standards, before the single fork habit becomes ingrained in the next generation. Bad table manners can turn an enjoyable meal into an embarrassment.”

From next month, cadres of “advisers on dining etiquette” will be on hand at Debenhams stores to demonstrate impeccable manners and to demystify such complex problems as place settings.

An etiquette guide will be posted on its website.

“Many people still regard it as an essential life skill,” Mr Watson added.

“It isn’t that people no longer care about dining etiquette – they still do.

“Instead, the popularity of finger food and ready meals means many young people have never had to learn.”

– from NZ