Frank, the Brits do have a knack for making fine projectile-spitting implements. It's just that now that the gummint has suppressed much private ownership of firearms that skill has migrated to air powered guns. Air Arms and many other makers of fine pellet guns have sprung up over the last 20 years or so, not to mention their forebears.
BTW, I think Four Bears was the name of one such maker of air canes. Advertised as just the thing for the gentleman who wanted a little safety and security for his nighttime photography.
Later one of the four bears died and the remaining three shifted the business to making tripods.
Or perhaps I'm making all of this up.