Five Standard Excuses (courtesy of Sir Humphrey)

The Comprehensive Schools Excuse: Things have gone wrong because of heavy cuts in staff and budgets which have stretched supervisory resources beyond the limit

The Charge of the Light Brigade Excuse: It was an unfortunate lapse by an individual which has now been dealt with under internal disciplinary procedures

The Munich Agreement Excuse: It occurred before important facts were known, and cannot happen again

The Anthony Blunt Excuse: There is a perfectly satisfactory explanation for everything, but security prevents its disclosure

The Concorde Excuse: It was a worthwhile experiment, now abandoned, but not before providing much valuable data and considerable employment