Happy (Belated) New Year to all my Beckworth residents (but not the beggars outside Sainsco who keep hassling me for change). I am hoping this fine message finds you well rested and overjoyed to be back at work. I myself have been away for a five week fact-finding jaunt to the far east (I was inspired to go by my political rival Sadiq Khan). I humbly apologise for missing Beckworth’s New Years eve but of course due to council funding cuts there was no official celebration this year (fireworks are very expensive), so I only really missed holding sparklers outside in the rain saying “happy new year” to complete strangers. I myself saw the new year in sipping cocktails with the high and mighty of Pakistan who I’m hoping will invest in our humble town… The things I do for you! But perhaps next year, if funding permits such extravagance, we can restart the traditional death by burning of Old Man Beckworth (to say goodbye to the old year) and the “birthing” of Baby Beckworth to welcome in the new year. So may I take this opportunity to wish us all a prosperous 2018. Thanking you most warmly. Aashif Ackworth. Mayor
Good morning fellow Beckworthers and a belated happy Christmas. I had thought the Mayor would have posted a blog from his “fact-finding council paid” holiday in the Bahamas, but it appears to have slipped his mind so you have me instead… So please let me wish you a belated Happy Christmas and I wanted to apologise for the last minute cancellation of this years traditional Boxing Day Swimming Race. Recent rupturing of local sewers have left the River Winnet unsafe for humans and so a swim in the currents wasn’t advisable. Race organiser (and MP) Hilary Benn says she hopes to reschedule the race for sometime in early 2018. Yours, Mrs Anne Chovey DFC, deputy Mayoress
Just a quick to reminder that tickets are still available for tonight’s New Years’ Eve Hootananny bash. Unfortunately Jesus’s favourite God-bothering folk trio The Faith Tones won’t now be performing due to one of the members being banged up at her Majesty’s pleasure (again)… As a last minute replacement Essex’s latest Status Quo tribute act Quatus Sto have stepped up, so be sure to wear denim tonight and be prepared to rock out, or whatever you do at a Quo concert… Doors open at 6.30, and tickets cost £95.49 which includes a “finger” buffet of Christmas leftovers. So join us to see the new year in, let’s hope it’s better than 2017 (which shouldn’t be too hard!). Tonight’s featured ale is The President’s Syrup and we’ve a got a few used Christmas cracker hats to hand out to the first ten punters dressed in “full Quo attire” through the door. So see you later. Cindy Carmarthen, Bar Manager, The Blind Badger Pub & Venue
Freezing news just in… Fans of dogging and public nudity started congregating and fornicating from late last night at the ancient Hammerite standing stones to celebrate today being the shortest day ever in the UK’s history (it’s only seven hours long today instead of the usual 24). I’m told that crowds of lusting onlookers have arrived this afternoon, some with torches for later, to see the sun set over the stones and then as it gets dark catch glimpses of bearded old men and women getting up to mischief behind the stones whilst others dance, sing and rub their nakedness up against the rough stones. Seems a funny way to celebrate the winter solstace but it makes for a newsworthy story. Christine Batley. Deputy Chief Pagan Worship Correspondent. Beckworth And Slocombe Herald Incorporating Nightly Gazette
Good evening Beckworth and happy Winter Solstice. Just a reminder that this coming Saturday Beckworth will be hosting the annual Christmas Smokers Fair in the Market Square with the a traditional Germanic ”Weihnachten” Christmas Fair lining the high street. It’s sure to be a wonderful day for smokers and smelly sausage lovers of all ages so get your towels onto the supplied sun-loungers very early.
All the events will be held outdoors, with the exception of the marijuana smokers pottery classes, pipe-rack engineering and sauerkraut construction drop-in sessions which will be held discretely in a porta-cabin in the school playground.
The fairs are your once in a year opportunity to buy flavoured tabacco, nicotene patches, lighters and those poncey electric fags alongside seasonal Christmas decorations made from fragments of the Berlin Wall, Angela Merkel fairies to top your tree, Volkswagen car parts, used lederhosen and whatever else it is our German friends sell at Christmas.
Great news for all the family; the pubs will be open from 8am Saturday and stay open until 11.30 that night to cater for the expected influx of heavy drinking teutonic smokers.
See you there, thanking you most warmly. Aashif Ackworth. Mayor
Good evening Beckworth. Just a reminder that tomorrow evening two members of popstar sensations The Fizz (Formerly known as The Nolans) will be switching on Beckworth’s Christmas lights. Sadly I can’t name the two members of the band who will be with us but i’m told one is an electrician, so if we have any trouble with the lights (s)he’ll sort ‘em out on the cheap. This year’s Christmas display is surely in the top thirty of the town’s best displays of the last three decades and i’m told is about a forty-three feet long give or take a few feet. If enough bulbs haven’t blown it’s bound to brighten up the high street and be a festive tourist attraction, even for those who know Father Christmas doesn’t actually exist. The more observant amongst you may notice that some of this years lights are in the baked goods as they were once used in TV’s Bake Off before it got sold to Channel 4… See you tomorrow, thanking you most warmly. Aashif Ackworth. Mayor
Hello everyone, your favourite pub landlady here… This is a message to remind you all that next Friday night The Blind Badger will be hosting the 7th Annual International Twerking Finals in our back room. Quite a few of the World’s finest twerkers will be descending on Beckworth in the hope of winning a miniature tin trophy and £550 prize money. Strictly Come Dancing’s ex-“Mr Seven” Len Goodman will be leading the judging panel which includes local celeb and handyman Les Dennis and that bloke off the telly who once played Alfie Moon on Eastenders. A rivetting evening is assured and after the finals Gareth Gates’ Mobile Disco will be rocking the room. It’s only a tenner on the door and this week’s featured ale at the pub is Liquid Night-Rogen. Warning: If you don’t like people wearing flesh-coloured bikinis, showing off their bottoms or grabbing their genitals, then please stay at home! Cindy Carmarthen, Bar Manager, The Blind Badger Pub & Venue
Hello all. I just wanted to spread the fantastic news that this Wednesday the annual International Wheelbarrow (And Garden Sprinkler) Show returns to Beckworth. Last year it was held at the NEC but was a bit of a disaster i’m told. The show (the 16th held in Beckworth) will be opened at 9am by wheelbarrow enthusiast Jeremy Vine and his manager says he will be personally demonstrating many of the exhibits and probably unveiling some gardening firsts. Mr Vine has promised to spend tomorrow painting the village hall and cleaning the loos in preparation for the show. So see you there. Yours sincerely, Valerie Saddleworth CBE. Chairlady. The Beckworth Guild of Trade & Commerce
Hello. Just a reminder that this year’s bonfire celebrations will be happening tonight, after Countryfile. Attractions will include a bonfire made entirely of old tyres and plastic bottles (we’re keen on recycling at the council), quite a few fireworks, a torch-lit choir, vegan food stalls and an effigy of Guy Fawkes lovingly made by local school children out of recycled sweet wrappers they collected on Halloween night. Prof Brian Cox will tell the story of the gunpowder plot from a small marquee (weather permitting) and for the under-5s once again the local Peppa Pig tribute band will be playing on a small open-air stage (some quickly tied-together crates). Yours Aashif Ackworth. Mayo
Dear flock. Apologies for missing last evening’s Harvest Festival service, I was nursing a terrible hangover all day and nodded off late afternoon… By the time I awoke the Strictly Come Dancing and X Factor Result Shows were starting… Thank God I woke in time for those as my video recorder is no longer in the land of the living and I’d have hated to miss such important televisual delights. Anyway my non-service attendance shouldn’t stop you giving generously, so please leave your harvest gifts in the church porch throughout today and i’ll pick them up this evening. If you’ve got frozen goods, such as ready-meals (hint: The verger and I love curry and chillis), oven chips and cornettos (not cheap own brands), please bring in a cool-bag to the vicarage on Monday. Have a wonderful Harvest and see you all later today.