Archive for the ‘Community spirit’ Category
It’s excellent to see the sophisticated OAPs of the north-east beginning to take direct action where it matters.
The Northern Echo, 21 February 2011 (story):
Water supply feud leads to pensioner’s threat to Percy family
POLICE have been alerted after a pensioner who changed his name to Bastard threatened to ruin the wedding of a North-East aristocrat.
Michael McNamara, 71, has vowed to disrupt the wedding service of Lady Katie Percy, the eldest daughter of the Duke and Duchess of Northumberland.
The pensioner wrote to Lady Katie – a friend of Prince William and Kate Middleton – to say he and a gang of relatives would turn up at the event.
Mr McNamara, who in recent years changed his name by Deed Poll to Michael ”Bastard” McNamara, said he was warned he faced arrest if he caused trouble.
What on earth could have led to this Bastard developing such a grudge against his rich and privileged bastard neighbours? A water supply, of course.
It is believed Mr McNamara developed a grudge against the Percy family following a dispute over the water supply at his home.
He has bombarded the Duke and Duchess, and Northumbria Police, with foul-mouthed and insulting postcards for many years.
He told The Journal in Newcastle: ”I’ve sent postcards to the police all my life. The Duchess used to get one every year but I sent one to her and her daughter last Friday.
”The police just said ‘How would you like it if they sent it to me?’
”I told them I was going to the wedding and they said that if I went I was going to get arrested. I said, ‘I will see you at the wedding’.”
No messin’. Hats off. Go on you Bastard!
Thanks to Nick Henegan.
It’s lovely when a community conjures up a bit of Blitz Spirit to unite around a common cause. In this case, the entire population of Basingstoke is pulling together to muster all of the tumble dryer fluff it can possibly find. A whole town picks its belly button in anticipation.
Basingstoke Gazette, 21 February 2011 (story):
Fluff needed for patchwork quilt
IT’S certainly an unusual request – but a Basingstoke art teacher is appealing for people to donate the fluff from their tumble dryer filters.
Julie Parker, a teacher at Cranbourne Business and Enterprise College, is making a patchwork quilt using the recycled material – but so far, she only has enough to make one square metre.
It is one of several unusual pieces of art that Ms Parker has challenged herself to make, having previously created a shirt using hair and a mattress from tumble dryer lint.
She said of her new project: “It’s based on the nostalgia and history of patchworks – you knew who the pieces of fabric had come from. My work is about human traces and the absent body.
“I started working with dust and made a video using dust. I also made a mattress out of tumble dryer lint, and it’s got birth, death and life all in the mattress with traces of people.”
Traces of people? Will somebody please call the police and tell them we’ve got a lead which could finally empty out that ‘Unsolved Murders in Basingstoke 1972-1998′ book.
They’ll call anything ‘art’ these days of course.
With public spending cuts beginning to bite, the Louth Leader continues its incredible freebie frenzy in a desperate bid to single-handedly salvage the Lincolnshire economy.
We’ve already seen them give away a free scone, some free butcher’s Lincolnshire sausages and a free jumbo sausage roll to each reader, but it hasn’t stopped there. Louth’s collective gluttony has continued unabated.
Mmmm! That FREE Cadbury chocolate bar was just the boost I needed after a hard day in the office. In fact, I must confess I now having something of a sweet tooth.
Oh yes, that delicious FREE mince pie well and truly hit the spot. And what a gorgeous red paper napkin thrown in for good measure.
I’m quite full now, I must say, so inevitably my thoughts are turning away from food and instead to how wonderful it would be if I had a well-populated charm bracelet to show off on my wrist while eating all of this stuff…
Oh, Louth Leader, you shouldn’t have… I adore it. Now I shall be the envy of all Louth.
Fuck it: I’m hungry again now, and frankly I could do with a cheap holiday as well.
Om nom nom nom. I see you’re still here. Do you mind? I’m eating.
Christmas is a period of warmth and happiness, uniting communities up and down the land with love and festive cheer.
But apart from all that, Redcar’s bitter neighbourly disputes continue every year without interruption; and let’s face it, that’s going to be far more entertaining.
Middlesbrough Evening Gazette, 15 November 2007:
Redcar Christmas lights under fire again from “House Doctor”
AN ANONYMOUS self-proclaimed “House Doctor” has re-emerged in Redcar to criticise Christmas lights displays.
The Gazette first reported in 2004 how letters from the “House Doctor” criticised as “tacky, common and cheap” festive lights on several houses on Redcar’s Mickledales estate. Residents hit back at the “cowardly” scribe.
Now it seems the writer may have returned, after a letter from the “House Doctor” arrived by post at a house in the Castle Road area.
It was received by a couple who for the past 10 years have added a colourful festive display to the exterior of their home.
But this year their preparations have been soured by the letter, which shows a November 5 postmark, and criticises the “vulgar” lights as an “annual disgrace” and an “eyesore”. The writer also claims residents are “appalled by the stupidity of it” adding all that is missing is the “loud and raucous” music from a “garishly painted showman’s ride”.
Personal comments are also made in the letter, which has saddened the couple.
The female occupant of the house, who asked not to be named, said: “It’s left us really upset. My husband has not been well.”
The ‘House Doctor’ clearly feels such a burning sense of responsibility towards the community that he or she simply cannot allow abstract festive notions like ‘goodwill to all men’ to prevent them from upholding the fundamentals of housing estate aesthetics.
Hats off, I say. A sustained campaign of anonymous letter-writing is clearly the most efficient means of communicating the truth to a mass audience.
But I bet this anonymous House Doctor didn’t bargain for the residents writing back:
A response has also been penned to the “House Doctor” which defends the couple and describes the critic as a “cowardly Scrooge”. It adds: “This is not a reasoned objection, it is a character assassination. Our lights will go up this year and may bring a smile to some lives, if not yours.”
Both letters have been put on display in a bus stop near the couple’s home and in the window of a nearby newsagent’s shop.
Neighbours support the couple. One said: “People around here are really mad about the letter criticising the lights. We’re all wondering who wrote it.”
The full versions of both letters can be read at the bottom of the article itself.
Merry Christmas Bah humbug to all readers of The Nether Regions.
A nation licks its lips in anticipation of the next perishable items to be given away as part of the Louth Leader‘s extraordinary generosity drive…
Hang on: it was bloody sausages last week! All they’ve done is add a pastry case. What a tribe of bastards. Lazy Louth Leader.
This is surely one of the strangest personals ads ever seen in a local newspaper.
Bridgwater Mercury, 19 October 2010 (story):
Police urge victims of bike light theft to get in touch
Bridgwater police are appealing for cyclists who have had their lights stolen to get in touch.
PC Adrian Hooper would like to hear from anyone who has had cycle lights, particularly LEDs, stolen after locking their bike in Bridgwater town centre.
He said: “If anyone has recently come back to their bicycle to find their lights had gone, I would be interested in hearing from them.”
Dedicated police officer, M, 51, WLTM owners of bicycles with lights recently stolen (particularly LEDs), M or F. For good times & maybe more.
PC Hooper can be contacted on 0845-4567000 or 01823-363292.
You know where to call.
Hats off to the Louth Leader and its Victorian sense of benevolence towards the peasant readership in these times of austerity. They won’t let you go hungry.
5 October 2010 (link):
Mmmmmm, that was indeed a delicious FREE scone. And what a delightful set of pigtails on her. I’m still feeling a bit peckish though…
Please, Louth Leader… may I have some more?
16 October 2010 (link):
Nom nom nom. Those were indeed delicious FREE Lincolnshire sausages.
Whatever next? More on this as it develops, but we’ll be totally stuffed by the end of October at this rate.
FAO the editor of the Louth Leader… I could do with a drink next time to help wash this stuff down. Thanks.
For most people, a ‘thank you’ letter conjures distant childhood memories of being forced to put pen to paper and thank an auntie for the hideous jumper she sent for a birthday.
But it appears there are people out there – some of them possibly even adults – who actually enjoy saying ‘thank you’ and enjoy it so bloody much that they’ll do it publicly in their local newspaper’s letters page.
Huddersfield Examiner, 24 July 2010:
I WOULD like to express my thanks to the gentleman who handed my bank card into the cashier at Marsh Co-op on Monday, June 21.
I was in so much pain with my arthritis and anxious to get home to take my painkillers I stupidly left my card in the cash point.
All I can say is thank God there are at least a few truthful decent people living in Marsh.
Due to my stupidity, it could have ended up in the hands of some drug dealer, of which there are many in Marsh.
Again, thank you whoever you are.
Whitehaven News, 14 July 2010:
SIR – On the afternoon after Whitehaven Carnival, I was walking along the harbour and fell and injured myself.
A big thank you to the person who kindly put a coat under my head to make me more comfy. Also to the lady that went to Tesco to fetch my wife.
All these people know who they are so a big thank you to all concerned.
Do they realistically expect the people concerned to be poring over the letters page every day in hope of finally getting the thanks they deserve for their good deeds? It appears so.
Don’t make do with a quick ‘thank you’ where the laborious details of your every move will do…
Halifax Evening Courier, 22 June 2010:
Imagine coming home and finding you are locked out of your house.
What would you do? Well thanks to a police officer and a taxi driver we managed to get in our house. We told our mum we would not be taking our keys with us when we went out and to not lock the door, but we arrived home to an empty house and a locked door and thanks to a neighbour we were informed that she had gone out.
We find ourselves stuck in Boothtown sat outside the Spar garage at 3am on Sunday morning when a policeman pulled in…he managed to give us a lift to ABC taxis who then took us to Brighouse train station to meet our sister to get her house keys so we could get in.
By 4.15am we managed to get in the house and are now watching Rocky on DVD.
To the policeman in question, the taxi driver and the neighbour in nearby flats…thank you.
Sam and Jo Hoyle
They wrote a letter to a newspaper at 4.15am at the same time as watching Rocky on DVD. Never in all my life…
But oh, what’s this? Ah yes, the passive aggressive ‘thank you’ letter… an excellent variation on the genre:
Huddersfield Examiner, 24 July 2010:
I WOULD like to say a huge thank you to the person who made a right mess of my car on Saturday night.
It has a rather large dent in the passenger door, light blue paint on the bumper (mine is a navy blue colour), looks terrible and is going to cost a lot of money to put it right.
This is going to be hard to do as I live on disability living allowance and sick pay. I just wish this person could have left their details. I hope they can sleep at night!
And while we’re on the subject… a big thank you to Anna Holden for her assistance in collating these letters.
Whilst waiting for a train connection at York railway station the other day, I pounced on the opportunity to purchase a copy of the Gazette & Herald, self-proclaimed as “Ryedale’s biggest selling weekly newspaper”.
It turns out it has one of those wonderful sections which details the social minutiae of parochial life, divided by village. Some of the villages have incredible names, such as Brompton By Sawdon and, my favourite, Huttons Ambo.
If you want to know who made the picnic, whose wheelchairs were pushed by whom and the scores from the local bridge club, look no further than the Gazette & Herald.
This stuff is genuinely printed for wider consumption.