Which all sounds great. So where do I sign up? This is a difficult one. Even among exclusive all-male drinking clubs, the Bullingdon is a notably exclusive all-male drinking club. A quick survey of known recent members reveals that around 60% are Old Etonians; the rest simply went to really posh public schools. Osborne is said to have been ragged by fellow Bullers over having attended St Paul\’s, the top London day school, which is, apparently, not posh enough. A good school, then, but this in itself isn\’t sufficient. You\’ve got to have a certain standing. An impressive lineage helps. As does a degree of jaunty charisma, either as a titled clown with a good line in drunken buffoonery, or as – someone with whom it might be handy to have an "in" when it\’s all over.
Prospective new members are proposed by a current member and then subjected to a club vote. This is all done in secret. You can be "put up" and blackballed and never be any the wiser. The first a new bug knows about it is when his rooms are invaded (ideally, via the window) and ceremonially trashed by way of initiation ("they overturned some of my flower pots," recalls my source).
So, what this enquiring little mind would like to know is, has anyone ever been put up, voted in and then said, "Bugger off, wankers"?*
*Or words to that effect.