Saturday, 21 August 2010

On England's Pleasant Pastures Seen

A bit of fag ash, an old Doris and a £75 fixed penalty for littering.

Behind the door is I in picking this up .... call it what you will, story, news item, or, a testament to Twenty First England. Not that I blog about this kind of stuff anymore, but sometimes something comes along that takes the biscuit and I have to have my twopenn'orth.

As I say I'm a bit behind the door in picking this thing up, well a lot behind actually, so not aimed at you Brits per se for the news will known to you already.

To inform then, those that wouldn't normally be privy to such a tale, Furriners; especially those Furriners that have the misfortune to live in furrin parts of the world, furrin third world countries as one expects to find in the rest of Europe. Furrin Furriners that so unlike we few, we happy few, we band of brothers so blessed with fortune that our feet tread this England, this shining bright light of modern European democracy, this envy of the free world.

So to my Countrymen, to my English Brothers, my comrades in arms, prithee, let us ignore these scurrilous lies writ below, instead I invite you to join me and with true patriotic fervour raise our voices as one crying in unison: "Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more; or close the wall up with our English dead, and cry 'God for Harry, England, and Saint George!'

Smoker faces £2,500 fine... for dropping cigarette ash on pavement

An elderly widow has been threatened with a £2,500 fine by council officials – for dropping cigarette ash on the pavement.

Sheila Martin, 70, was smoking at a bus stop when a warden pounced and handed her the £75 fixed penalty for littering.

The cash-strapped grandmother refused to pay and has now been warned it could rise to £2,500.

Mrs Martin, from Oldbury, West Midlands, was hit with the original fine by the Sandwell council warden after visiting her daughter on May 25.

She said: ‘I still can’t believe what happened. I was sat at a bus stop quietly enjoying a cigarette and from nowhere a warden appeared and accused me of littering.

‘I was only smoking a cigarette. It is one of the few things I can afford to buy myself.’

Mrs Martin claims she was so shocked that she later suffered an asthma attack at home and was knocked unconscious for three hours after falling over.

She said: ‘I’ve always been a law-abiding person, so this was all a big shock to me and I just keeled over.

‘I haven’t been the same since and have only got by thanks to the help of my friends and neighbours.

‘It feels like I am being victimised.’

Mrs Martin had initially refused to pay the £75 fixed penalty charge. But she has seven days to cough up or she will be summoned to court and could face a fine of up to £2,500.

‘It all seems so heavy handed,’ she said.

‘I can’t work out why the council would be so vindictive over such a petty matter. I’m so upset and angry.’ More The Wail

What gets my goat about all this is brain power. How much possessed of it, the man that could stand there and write a ticket for cigarette ash, and how unpossessed of the same attribute, those that employ the fellow and authorise him with a book of tickets?