OH woe is me. The end of civilisation is nigh. A most calamitous event is about to happen.

No, don't be soft, it's not nuclear war. Instead, I'm alarmed by the horrifying prospect of the end of first-class travel on Chiltern Railways.

News broke this week that the train company is considering doing away with its upgraded section in order to give more seats to second class passengers.

Apparently, only 30 per cent of first class tickets are sold, while some standard travellers have to stand because there aren't enough seats in their bit.

The plan might well benefit the man-in-the-street, but it will discriminate against those wishing to have a choice as to where they sit. And it will do nothing for me and my constitution.

I'm by no means wealthy, but I prefer to have the choice over whether to sit in comfort or to join the masses.

As a young man, I thought nothing of saving a few bob and sitting or standing amongst the plebs.

But, as I grew older, I tired of having to share a seat with a pin-striped suited garlic-breathed bore. You know the type: they either keep jabbing you in the side with their crossword pen, or they deafen you with incessant chattering on their mobile telephone.

And then there's the body odour, the inane chattering and the sleepy drunks falling into your lap. But that's enough about Mrs Mann and her friends.

It's my right to spend a bit more to be in exclusive company when I travel. I don't always choose that option, but it's my cherished democratic right when I feel bored with the world.

In fairness, it's worth pointing out that Chiltern Railways give a first class service (hope there are no plans to go second class in that as well). They are genuinely the best and most reliable train company I've ever used.

They are clean, punctual and there's rarely a problem. My occasional trips from High Wycombe or Beaconsfield into central London always go like a dream, and it's possibly the one institution I've never had cause to moan at.

So chaps, please don't make me share with the rest of the world, or I'll have no choice but to stay in the WC compartment for the entire duration of every trip.