Conservative leadership candidate Theresa May has pleaded with Lichfield MP Michael Fabricant not to declare support for her campaign.
The battle to succeed David Cameron at Number 10 has seen a number of MPs benefiting from the endorsement of the Lichfield incumbent. Before any candidates had declared, Mr Fabricant was first out of the trap to declare that he was firmly behind fellow clown Boris Johnson’s claim to the throne.
He announced on Twitter:
But following a tip-off in the early hours of Thursday morning that Blair-cuckold Rupert Murdoch had ordered the political assassination of Mr Johnson, the Lichfield member immediately switched his allegiance to someone who looked like a winner.
Unwittingly he opted for Justice Secretary Michael Gove, a self-styled egotist powered by a vortex of schoolboy inadequacy, haunted by the fear that his wife was punching below her weight. Mr Gove said:
‘I did almost everything not to be a candidate for the leadership of this party. I was so very reluctant because I know my limitations. Whatever charisma is, I don’t have it, whatever glamour may be, I don’t think anyone could ever associate me with it.’
Prior to the public announcement by Boris of his own demise, Mr Fabricant in a Saul-to-Paul-like conversion declared that Mr Gove was the only credible candidate for the PM’s job. He said:
With support for Mr Grove dramatically dwindling going into the weekend, Mrs May’s team became increasingly concerned that Mr Fabricant would switch support to the Home Secretary. In a late night telephone call to the Lichfield MP Mrs May said:
‘Michael you’re a buffoon, but if I can rely on you to lend your support to Julie Andrews tribute act Andrea Leadsom, I can promise you a Cabinet roll.’
Sandwiches are also available at Cabinet meetings.
Controversy has hit Lichfield’s Garrick theatre as it emerged that its ‘enhanced ticketing protocol’ was inadvertently invoked for the recent sell-out concert by Sir Tom Jones.
Thousands of people attended the LichVegas event in Beacon Park which was marred by ticketing problems that saw multiple duplicate tickets issued by the Garrick which was running the box office for events organiser TinyCOW.
Lichfield based Lee O’Hanlon of TinyCOW commented:
‘Confusion and delays on the door were caused when it became apparent that duplicate tickets had been issued. Fans were disappointed to have their “keepsake” tickets confiscated as we had to retain them as evidence against the Garrick.
‘We’ve been pressing the Garrick for an explanation but so far none has been forthcoming.’
However 5SL has been contacted by a disgruntled Garrick employee with an axe to grind who wishes to remain anonymous. Box office manager Paul Mycock disclosed:
‘This was a cock-up by the Garrick. It was clear from the outset that Tom’s concert would be a sell-out but someone here inadvertently initiated the ‘enhanced ticketing protocol’ in the box office software.’
Mr Mycock explained:
‘It is well known that The Garrick has traditionally been the venue of choice for third-rate acts and productions.
‘The nadir was ‘An Evening with Michael Fabricant’ when it became apparent that only a handful of Jonathan Hall’s immediate family would actually buy a ticket. The protocol was created – all tickets bought would generate ten duplicate free tickets. These were left on tables in The Malt and stuck in copies of The Big Issue by local salesman Gobby Scouse. This produced a respectable turnout, albeit an audience comprised of drunks and vagabonds.
‘This ticketing protocol was mistakenly invoked for Sir Tom and chaos ensued.’
Garrick head of marketing Alex Lloyd refused to comment on this specific case as it was in the hands of their solicitors, but he did say:
‘Multiple ticketing can work well for some unpopular events. Almost twenty members of the audience are now paying for their seats at the monthly Comedy 42 events.’
Sir Tom Jones has been made aware of the controversy but after surviving decades of industry scams he commented :
‘It’s not unusual.’
Lichfield constituents will now have to go online to book an appointment with their MP Michael Fabricant through the National Rail Enquiries website.
Previously only available by written application penned with a swan’s quill on the finest vellum and handed to a barista at Caffe Nero, these surgery appointments have proven to be rather too bothersome. Mr Fabricant explained:
‘It was proving just too popular, some weeks I’d have see up to three plebeians pleading their worthless causes. It was outrageous, turning up to interrupt my long-weekend break with moans and groans about trivial parochial issues – no health provision in Burntwood; appalling social housing conditions in the Dimbles; or, best of all, the sell-off of the Friary Library, what a joke, they can’t even read.
‘Well, local issues affecting people who don’t vote for me are of no interest and frankly it’s an unwelcome distraction from my camp Twitter innuendo sessions with a piping hot grande Americano.’
Our local member expects that the new booking arrangements, managed by National Rail Enquiries, will ensure that only issues relating to rail travel to and from London Euston on a Thursday afternoon and a Sunday evening will be raised. Mr Fabricant elaborated:
‘Constituents can go online, type in their West Coast Mainline or HS2 concerns and National Rail will book a reservation with me on the London/Lichfield line. But remember, it’s first come first served – there’s only one 2 minute slot available per journey. And at a ticket price of £250 I think that’s real value for money.’
Mr Fabricant regularly challenges @LondonMidland on matters of grave concern to his constituents, he has tweeted:
“Is vaping allowed on @LondonMidland trains? On Sunday, there were thick white fumes in my part of the train. Ugghhh!”
“Intensely irritating getting the message that @LondonMidland 14.46 EUS > Crewe is boarding then left on platform!”
The Lichfield MP has also called for a new HS2 station to be located by his home on The Close and for the new line to link up with Eurostar. The vociferous Brexit campaigner commented:
‘HS2 ought to have a complete rethink. The route is completely flawed. If it joined up with Eurostar we could deport migrants much more efficiently. What you have to ask is, if he had been in charge what would Hitler have done?’
Local damp and mould campaigner Bessy Banks from the neighbouring Bromford Housing settlement in Lichfield North said:
‘We just don’t need these pretend camp-lite sites in our area. If you’re looking for break with all the comforts of home, then stay at home. If you’re looking for a real-life back-to-nature outdoor experience come and spend a night in my house.
‘We grow mushrooms in our bedrooms you know. Stick that in your vape and smoke it.’
Objections have also been raised by Dr Nathaniel Braun, principal of the Maple Hayes Dilysxea School which adjoins the proposed hippy commune. He said:
‘It’s not the ridiculous beards and smug arrogance of these affluent, middle-class, white, politically-progressive, artisan food-loving millennials that’s the problem.
‘It’s the fact that “glamping” isn’t even a real word. Here at Maple Hayes we have enough problems with real words without struggling with invented ones.’
Lichfield Police have expressed concerns about the integration of hipster teenagers into the local community. Recently re-elected Staffordshire Police and Crime Commissioner Clyde Ellis said:
‘Hipster families can cause real problems when they move into an area. Unlike normal travellers they refuse to use the local fields and watercourses for washing and defecation, preferring to migrate into town to ablute in our pubs and restaurants. This puts a real strain on local facilities; the disabled toilet at The Malt is particularly vulnerable especially in warm weather.
‘Public order issues are also worrying. Hipster youngsters wandering around Beacon Park with their books, floppy hair and wispy facial hair are just asking for a thump in the throat, admittedly a traditional Lichfield greeting invented by our MP, but unwelcome nonetheless.’
Charity shops expect to be overwhelmed as the visitors arrive in search of trendy retro tweeds and floral dresses. Charity shop manager Paul Mycock said:
‘These families swarming around the shops can cause real obstacles for the elderly charity workers as they shuffle and dither about the place trying to look busy.’
The owner of the field Farmer Ted said:
‘The land has previously been rented out for grazing, but a change to subsidies and an opportunity for me to cash in on the hipster market means the local livestock owners can just feck right off.
‘And you’d all better not object to the application, Plan B is a sale to the Staffordshire Gypsies’
The planning application can be viewed at https://planning.lichfielddc.gov.uk/online-applications/applicationDetails.do?activeTab=summary&keyVal=O68HOZJE0FV00
Petplan, the UK pet insurance provider, is to introduce health insurance for pet owners’ families as part of its premier level cover, offering “long-term peace of mind for your dog, your cat and now your children”.
Petplan marketing manager Paul Mycock commented:
‘We have noticed an increasing number of pet owners pleading with their vets for timely medical advice and minor surgical procedures not only for their pets but also for themselves and their families.’
Driven by increasing frustration with the NHS delays, whether trying to get a GP appointment or an early date for an operation, patients are turning to man’s best friend’s health providers for a solution.
Mum of five under fives Britney Singleton is unimpressed, she said:
‘If the dog is scratching at his ear I can call the vet, make an appointment and get him sorted within two hours. If one of the kids has an ear infection we’ll have to wait a week to see a doctor. During the winter I call the surgery for an appointment even if no-one’s ill, just in case.’
Local vet John Rothschild commented:
‘With affordable pet insurance cover now available for all the family vets will be able to relieve the pressure on our NHS colleagues. If your kids need worming just bring them along.’
Pippa Greenflange, long suffering wife of a Lichfield Roundtabler is excited by these developments, she said:
‘I’ve been trying to get Pete booked in for a vasectomy for months but he still hasn’t been given a date. I’ve bought myself a dog just so that I can get the pet insurance for the whole family. Pete’s booked in at Rothschild’s Friday morning.’
Mr Rothschild welcomed the new patient:
‘Pete should be back home by lunchtime, it’s just a routine procedure, castration.’
Lichfield parents say they will be sending their children to school tomorrow (May 3) despite a planned national day of action with thousands of primary-aged youngsters expected to stay at home.
The renegade parents realise that their children are being “tested, overworked and stressed out by school” but that they don’t care because their kids are smart enough to take it and accept it as a character building experience to prepare them for the real world of the 2020’s.
A new Midlands group was inspired by the national ‘Let Kids Be Kids Forever And Ever’ campaign has petitioned against the SATs examinations.
Lichfield mum of five under fives, Britney Singleton, will be joining the strike, she said:
‘I’m passionate about my children’s education so I won’t be sending them to school.
‘I’m not anti-testing I just don’t want my children to be tested.
‘I find the whole SATS process very stressful, due largely to the competitiveness of the parents. It’s bringing gobby touchline parenting off the playing field into the classroom and I just can’t take it any more.
‘The tests are far too difficult for many parents and I worry about my children being singled out and bullied just because they have a stupid mum.’
The new SATs exams mean children as young as five are now completely oblivious to the fact that their teachers are being tested on their professional competence.
Paula Mycock, a mum of two from Fradley, said she would be sending her children to school tomorrow as usual, she said:
‘I have to work for a living and have a life. I ask myself, will taking a day off work to look after the kids make any difference to national education policy? So I’ll be on the 07.24 train to Birmingham tomorrow as usual.’
Photograph from The Guardian showing parent and child unconnected with this article
EXCLUSIVE: The leader of Burntwood Town Council has confirmed he will step down next month.
Cllr Richard Mosson says he will relinquish his position at the helm of the controlling Conservative group.
Read Cllr Mosson’s full statement on his resignation below:
‘I will be stepping down in May, but that is not unusual as the Conservative group are rotating the responsibility of being leader in the hope that we can find a decent one eventually.
‘It has been very hard work reading all those agenda documents and briefing notes but enjoyable none the less, once I realised that as Leader it wasn’t really necessary to have a grasp of any actual facts.
‘I would like to take a few moments now to blame the previous council, under Labour control, for all the problems that I’ve caused during the past year.
‘Labour will probably unearth the embarrassment of the consort’s chain again. It cost a bit less than £400 and as this fell inside the budget of the chairman essentially this has not cost the taxpayer a penny. Because the chairman’s budget is not taxpayer funded, as it materialises out of thin air every financial year if I understand correctly.
‘The positives are that the Old Mining College Centre will still be called the Old Mining College Centre, paying tribute to Burntwood’s proud mining heritage. I was delighted that my battle against Labour to retain that name was so successful. The building has new IT facilities that will enable councillors and council officials to maximise cost effective communications with the public through use of social media – another innovation that I have ceaselessly championed during my mercifully short tenure.
‘The official reopening of the Old Mining College Centre takes place on May 8, coincidentally following my departure.
‘Other positives are that everything will seem bigger, better and brighter next year without me.
‘The Wakes which will be also be back, another traditional event that has received by wholehearted support in the past.
‘As a controlling group we have been working hard behind the scenes (in case you thought that we weren’t actually doing anything) and have been in discussions to finally get Burntwood the retail offering it needs to boost the local economy and improve areas in the town that have been left derelict for years. I am confident that we will soon secure a new high profile tenants for the shopping centre, discussions with BHS and Comet are in advanced stages.
‘I have also invited London and Cambridge Properties Plc to purchase the remainder of the town that they do not already own for £1 and have introduced them to Tata Steel who I believe is actively seeking industrial space in the UK for its steelmaking operations at the moment.
‘The town is finally moving forward. We will welcome hundreds of new residents who will be moving into the Milestone Way development when most of the unexploded bombs have finally been removed from this contaminated site.
‘Having totally ignored the Neighbourhood Plan, we have welcomed members of the public to join the committee in the hope that someone with a modicum of insight and talent can deliver some sort of plan for the town that will not be laughed at in public by Lichfield District Council, unlike our first attempt.
‘We are fully aware of the need for improved healthcare facilities and I would thoroughly recommend BUPA Health Insurance and Little Aston private hospital.
‘All in all Burntwood will be a better place without me in charge. As well as all of the above we now have a McDonalds to look forward to which we hope will be the catalyst for more local obesity and antisocial behaviour in the town centre. The defibrillators, that I have persuaded Cllr Darren Ennis raise funds for, will be essential to resuscitate our town.
[Additional reporting by @LichfieldLive]