WHERE men of intellect, wit and culture meet (The 12 Bells in Cirencester on a Monday night) topics for conversation are many and varied.

One such matter concerns scones.

First of all pronunciation of this delightful confection, then flavour and general quality.

Locations where such delights can be obtained are also on the agenda.

First of all pronunciation. On this we are united.

The edible item has to rhyme with ‘John’ and not ‘bone’.

Anyone using the latter pronunciation is not a true connoisseur.

Our area of research is considerable.

One of our members is a cyclist, stopping for breaks between Trowbridge, Lechlade, Castle Coombe and Cricklade.

All Gloucestershire is covered and most of North Wiltshire by our pedalling expert.

Taking Mrs Light shopping has increased my expertise so both rural and urban areas are catered for, and of course garden centres as well.

In the interests of research sponge cakes, carrot cakes etcetera are at the moment forbidden. All of us are concentrating on scones.

Three of our number come from our subject nations.

You know the ones. One is north of the border and the other is to be found the other side of Offa’s Dyke. How lucky they are to be able to move on from oak cakes and those of the welsh variety.

Our period of research will continue until early May, giving us plenty of opportunity to enjoy the delights of a Cotswold spring as we seek out various venues.

There are some early front runners however.

The café in the Brewery Arts Centre in Cirencester is the favoured source for one of our members, while Mrs Light has asked me to mention Marks and Spencer, both Cheltenham and Swindon orbital.

The charming cafes of Wotton-Under-Edge are high on my list as is the beautiful coffee opportunity at Filkins Woollen Mill.

Any recommendations from readers are most welcome.

We will enjoy checking them out, but if you pronounce scone to rhyme with bone I’m afraid you will be ignored.