When the great Roman general Julius Caesar had conquered France he gazed across at the island just 22 miles away and decided to take a closer look.

Many of his soldiers refused to board the ships. There were rumours of great sea monsters prowling the waters around Britain - though these were probably whales, far more numerous then.

And people who were more used to the Mediterranean could never get quite the hang of the tides elsewhere.

They wouldn’t have felt at home in Britain anyway. There weren’t as many Italian restaurants here in those days.

It’s just a shame that they didn’t have Boris Johnson. The foreign secretary’s latest publicity attempt has been to float the idea of a bridge across the channel.

He says the two countries should be linked by more than a single rail line.

It seems a strange position for someone who has argued so firmly for pulling up the drawbridge on Europe. And I’m sure the most fervent Brexiteers will regard this idea as a bridge too far.

Besides there are still bridges in Britain - in Cumbria and elsewhere - awaiting repairs. I’m all for building bridges instead of walls, but I’d respectfully suggest we take care of our own first.

Could it happen in future? Other places further than 22 miles away apart have bridges linking them.

And it’s hardly a new idea. There was once a land bridge between Britain, France and the Netherlands, until around 6.500BC when rising sea levels cut us off.

A bridge would be a return to the good old days - the good very old days.