Lichfield MP Michael Fabricant has taken to wearing a blindfold when out in public in order to reduce any possible contact with his constituents
Mr Fabricant has had a hearing problem for many years, turning a deaf ear to any local issues that do not interest him. In a candid interview with 5SL the MP said:
‘Unless something is likely to impact on my travel arrangements to London, or there is an opportunity to take credit for the successful outcome for a campaign that I have not been involved with, or I can promote of the activities of the West Midlands mayor; then quite frankly I’m not interested.
‘One of the major drawbacks of returning to LichVegas is that my taxpayer-funded long weekends are often disrupted by constituents coming up to me in cafe Nero asking me to do my job.
‘Look, I’ve sorted out Burntwood health centre, I’ve saved the MIU at Samuel Johnson hospital, I’ve secured M&S as anchor tenant for Friarsgate and I will shortly be announcing how I single handedly obtained funding for the Lichfield Southern Bypass. What more do you want?
‘All I ask is that I be allowed to walk unmolested from my grace and favour apartment in Cathedral Close in search of a skinny latte. If the only way to do that is to remove my hearing aid and wear a blindfold when out in public, then so be it.’
Local plumber and Labour activist Paul Mycock is unimpressed, he said:
‘I’m unimpressed. If it isn’t bad enough that he has no interest in his constituents, he adds insult to injury by doing a very poor impersonation of David Bowie’s Lazarus.
‘Talk about raising the dead, he’ll need to start practicing the art of necromancy just to keep his majority with the average age of Lichfield Conservative voters now topping 98.’
Any constituents who have been unable to contact their MP will be able to see him by tuning in to Celebrity First Date on Channel 4 on Thursday 2 November at 10pm.
A record number of racists are expected to gather in Beacon Park for Proms in the Park on Saturday (September 2) evening. Organisers are confident that there will be a good turnout for Lichfield District Council’s free outdoor rally.
The City of Lichfield Concert Band will play popular music from 5.30pm, warming up the elderly white middle class crowd as they settle down for an alcohol-fuelled evening of benign xenophobia. The band will perform numbers from the movies including favourites from The Dam Busters, Lawrence of Arabia, The Battle of Britain and Bridge over the River Kwai.
War veteran and BSARA chairman Sidney Sprite, 109, is too infirm to attend the event this year, he said:
‘I can’t come along but will be listening through the open windows of my drawing room whilst the new Mrs Sprite, 35, unfurls Jack up the flagpole in our garden.’
The main concert will feature the British Police Symphony Orchestra and classically trained singers performing a varied musical pogrom from 7.30pm.
Local MP Michael Fabricant is unable to attend the event this year due to global holiday commitments, he commented:
‘I really enjoy the casual jingoism of the Lichfield Proms. Although I can’t listen to that much Wagner, I keep getting the urge to invade Poundland.’
London Midland has confirmed that the incoming Cross City train service will not be stopping at Aston or Erdington from 10am on Saturday. Police Inspector Paul Mycock welcomed the decision, he commented:
‘All are welcome to attend this free event but the Erdington Defense League are not really the sort of racists that we encourage to visit the City.’
Inspector Mycock went on to defend his force’s decision not to kit out its officers in nationalistic paraphernalia nor to drive around in a Union flag liveried patrol car to support the popular white middle class event. He said:
‘That would be a ridiculous waste of valuable police resources and totally undermine the impartiality and professionalism of the force. Whoever would seriously think that would be a good idea?’
Lichfield Women’s Institute chair Mrs Crystal Knight is a Proms regular, she said:
‘I’ve been coming here with my wealthy insurance-funded widowed lady friends for years. We sing along to to those lovely xenophobic anthems whilst waving our flags and holding our flaming torches aloft.
‘But what we’re really looking forward to this year is the Wicker Man burning to accompany the firework finale. Colonel Knight would have approved.’
Lichfield District Council Planning Committee has approved plans this evening (21 August) for a new shopping trolley bay in the middle of the bus station car park.
Local supermarket shopper Pawelek Mycock welcomed the decision, he said:
‘I welcome the decision, many a time I have had to struggle down from Tesco to catch the bus with half a dozen carrier bags stuffed with discounted loaves on a Sunday afternoon. I’ll be able to take a trolley now and park it in the new bay. It’ll work great with bags full of rancid fruit and vege on the night as well.’
The planning application was submitted by Friarsgate virtual developer U+I Group, its deputy CEO and Leader of Lichfield District Council Richard Upton commented:
‘We could see an immediate need to support the local community and provide a safe drop off point for stolen supermarket trollies where your Erdington grooming gangs could deposit unconscious Lichfield girls before catching the train home.
‘Anyone who suggests that this planning application is a cynical move to give the impression that we are pressing ahead with our development plans is mistaken. We already did that when we closed Tempest Ford, threw 24 workers out of a job prematurely and created a derelict site at the City gateway.
‘And just to be on the safe side we’ve submitted another application to move around some parking spaces.’
Friarsgate Shopping Center is expected to open to the public in Spring 2030.
The Friarsgate scheme has received a boost after Lichfield MP Michael Fabricant confirmed that he has successfully negotiated a pre-let agreement with Marks and Spencer to relocate the retailer to the new Lichfield city centre redevelopment.
Mr Fabricant commented:
‘I am delighted to announce that I have secured the future of the shopping centre redevelopment. The scheme had been stagnating for over a decade in the hands of our low-functioning local councillors, I really had no alternative but to step in to salvage the project.
‘I have been in close contact with the CEO’s of developer U+I Group and M&S over the last few months. Since I became involved at the very highest level, as only I could do to be honest, this successful outcome was inevitable.’
The news follows confirmation that Mr Fabricant has also solved another long delayed project, the Burntwood Health Centre.
The Lichfield member said:
‘Yes, I’ve been very busy working for the good of my constituents. Not only have I saved Friarsgate but the poor and sick of Burntwood will now get a new Health Centre as a direct result of my intervention at the very highest level.’
‘It will be open within three years. Sorted. Next!
‘Next? Now there’s an idea. Andy, do you have Adam Wolfson’s number?’
Former Cllr Steve Norman was unavailable for comment, he said:
‘Why doesn’t Fabricant just take his high level CEO retail contacts and stick them up his asre.’
Former Burntwood Town Council leader Cllr Richard Mosson has admitted that it was probably a mistake for the Council to commit local taxpayers to a property development vanity project.
The Council offices moved from it’s convenient cost-effective location at Burntwood library to the Old Mining College Centre in 2015. Cllr Mosson said:
‘It was a great opportunity, what could possibly go wrong, signing up to a 35 year full repairing lease of a dilapidated building?’
A meeting of the Town Council’s policy and resources committee last week to considered plans to address the state of the building, including replacement of wooden framed sash windows at a cost of £20,000 and the relaying of floors. The total cost of repairs and refurbishments is currently estimated at over £55,000.
Paul Mycock, an officer in Lichfield District Council’s Legal, Property and Democratic Services department did not want to be identified. He said:
‘I can barely contain myself,’ he laughed, ‘even with the District Council’s resources and proven track record in successful property development projects, we could never make the Old Mining College commercially viable. But we were saddled with a 35 year full repairing lease from the landlord, Staffordshire County Council. We told them we wanted to surrender the lease and they said “fcuk off”.
‘Thinking that maybe they had been a little harsh, the CC came back to us to say that they would take a surrender but only if we could find some other mug to take it on on the same debilitating terms.
‘There was a knock on the door and who should be there but former Burntwood Town Councillor Steve Norman. And the rest, as they say, is history.’
The Town Council meeting considered various solutions to the dilemma. Cllr Sue Woodward suggested approaching the producers of DIY SOS or the Restoration Project. Unelected leader of the Council “Cllr” Norman Baker responded:
‘Don’t be so ridiculous Sue, after all it was you and your husband that got us into this mess. No, what I propose is that we spent £5,000 on flowers and a new lawn and introduce a mini crazy golf course. And we should invest in photo’s of Town Council Chairmen past and present to adorn the stairway and the charge local taxpayers who want to view. We could announce these innovative plans on a new £1,000 message board.
‘Sorted. Now where’s my cab? Has anyone seen Brian? The old fool.’
Richard Upton, Deputy CEO of Friarsgate developer U+I Group, has confirmed that he will be taking up the post of Leader of the Council effective from 1 August 2017. Mr Upton said:
‘I am delighted to accept my generous demand of the Council and I’m looking forward to taking up my new post on 1 August. I will be continuing in my role as Deputy CEO of U+I as I understand that the position of Leader traditionally entails the expenditure of very little time, talent or effort.’
Outgoing Leader Cllr Mike Wiltcox commented:
‘I am delighted that Richard has decided to accept his offer to sack me as Leader, although I will continue to fulfill my role as Conservative councillor for Fradley as this also entails the expenditure of very little time, talent or effort.’
Richard Dicking, Lichfield’s strategic director of democratic, development and legal added:
‘Mr Upton has appointed the best man for the job. This will complete U+I’s takeover of all Council business and ensure the smooth running of the Cabinet and all Committees. We will no longer have to waste time submitting Council meeting Agendas to U+I’s “Commercial Sensitivity and Financial Viability Committee” for prior approval. Richard Upton will exercise delegated powers from U+I to control all aspects of Lichfield business.’
There has been increasing disquiet at the number of occasions where the public has been excluded from parts of Council meetings on the grounds of “commercial sensitivity”. Commentators have been left wondering what can possibly be commercially sensitive about Council car parking charges or the location of the Tourist Information office.
Mr Upton said:
‘I can’t comment on individual agenda items that have been discussed in secret, other than to say that they related to commercially sensitive matters for U+I that could affect the financial viability of U+I.
‘However I will be addressing these concerns directly as soon as I take office.
‘In future there will be no prior publication of Agendas or briefing notes, all Council meetings will be held in secret and no minutes will be kept. Now fuck off out of my office.’
LibDem Cllr Paul Ray welcomed the announcement, he said:
‘If all Council business is conducted in camera, as we lawyers like to say, that’ll give me the perfect excuse not to attend any meetings. No change there then at least.’
Five Spires Live has not bothered to contact anyone for comment.
The developer of Lichfield’s virtual Friarsgate shopping centre, U+I (Development Securities), claims that the redundancy of 24 workers at the Tempest Ford dealership evidences that a start on site has “materially commenced” for planning purposes.
Failure to demonstrate that a positive start has been made on the development by 27 May 2017 will trigger a reassessment of the financial viability of excluding affordable housing from the regeneration scheme.
A spokesman for U+I said:
‘Affordable housing is a curse on developer profit. By forcing the District Council to serve notice to quit on Tempest Ford under the terms of the development agreement we are able to avoid any inconvenient social housing issues being raised again.’
Burntwood mother of five under 4 year-olds Pauline Mycock has worked at Tempest Ford for the past 10 years, she said:
‘I can’t believe it, we were all given our redundancy notices today. How are we going to manage to feed our kids and pay our mortgages? We’ll probably be repossessed and have look to social housing. Oh, hang on a minute…’
Tempest Ford’s managing director Brian Carruthers says the decision by Lichfield District Council and its puppeteer Development Securities to require vacant possession by July 23 has come as a complete shock to him, he said:
‘This has come as a complete shock to me, the dealership has nowhere to go and therefore it has been forced to close. I’d only been given 10 years notice to make alternative arrangements, it’s a bloody disgrace.’
On the brighter side Mr Carruthers has announced a closing down sale:
‘I’m offering great staff discounts on used cars at the moment as part of our redundancy package. And for the more entrepreneurial any offers for my interest in the former Naturana site on Eastern Avenue would be most welcome.’
Dick King, director of Place and Community at Lichfield District Council, said:
‘Friarsgate is a complex £70 million scheme that will bring hundreds of new jobs to the city. We have now served notice to quit on Tempest Ford, laid waste the gateway to the City and thrown 24 citizens on the scrap heap in order to facilitate major works starting on virtual Friarsgate in September. I have accepted that this amounts to a “material start on site” by U+I for planning purposes.
‘But if something doesn’t start coming out of the ground in September then frankly we’re all fckd.’