Charles Rubens Busby, a butcher from Cricklewood who asked to avoid conscription so that he could continue to run his shop during the First World War, had an unwelcome note of caution added to his appeal letter: writing anonymously, a local resident called Busby "a proper rotter of a man" and a "rotten shirker".

The Middlesex Appeal Tribunal was swayed by the critic, who questioned why Busby should stay while "married men have had to shut up their shop and go".

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