Fragment Friday: Spennyriver Dispatch Edition

satirical humour spennyriverSpennyriver is a place I like to visit from time to time.  It’s a fictional town deep in the heart of the Midlands, UK.  It’s a bit different from what I usually write, but I think it fits into the weird category. The Dispatch is the local newspaper that keeps us up to date on all the goings on in this small Midlands town.  It’s like a regular town with regular people. Just weirder.

The town has its own vocabulary, not unlike the medium-sized city, Nottingham (although it’s NOT Nottingham). If you struggle with any of the vocabulary, drop a comment, and I’ll translate! Any particularly difficult words I translate at the end of a story. If you say the words out loud, it makes more sense.  Trust me.

Inside today’s issue:

  • Council funding cuts
  • more on the knitting circle violence

Funding cuts to impact local services

On Monday, Councillor Chappers, head of Spennyriver council, outlined some of the difficulties the local authority is facing in the wake of increasingly aggressive austerity measures.

“We are living through difficult times. The Central Government is placing some tough restrictions on how we use the money in the public purse. We have had to take the difficult decision to close some of the public services that you have all become accustomed to. This will include leisure centre and library closures.”

The crowd that had gathered around the block of public toilets, which is currently housing the few local government officials that remain, started to show their displeasure, by throwing a selection of Haribo sweets at Cllr Chappers. He did, however, have some positive news and some alternative suggestions:

“There is some good news: the expenses claim I put in for a treehouse for my son has been approved. Timber will be arriving at the weekend, and work will begin straight away. We have also reached an agreement to share space with ‘Vera’s Chips’ to keep the library open. From Monday, books will be available alongside the fish and chips. We are still in discussions with a number of local businesses about rehousing leisure centre facilities, and we will make an announcement on that shortly.”

Knit and natter dispute

Old rivalries were rekindled as the knitting circle met last week.

Police were called to break up a number of altercations at the community centre, when an argument broke out over the decision to get Bourbon biscuits instead of the usual shortcake ones, for the group to dip in their tea. Regular member, Hilda Jones, 48, set the scene:

“We was all sittin’ round the table, chatting like, when Dorothy comes in an’ drops a plate of Bourbons down on the table. I mean, Bourbons? Come on. We all thought she was havin’ a laugh, but when she says this is what we’re havin’, Doris just let her know what she thought of that suggestion.”

Indeed, according to others present, Doris Oldee, 61, voiced her opinion using very strong language, which some readers may find offensive. According to eye-witnesses, Doris described the Bourbon scandal as ‘blooming ridiculous’ and ‘not worth the Wurther’s Originals’ she had paid to attend the group that session. Following this outburst, she stood and attempted to overturn the table, which she failed to do, which is when the real trouble started.

There will be a full report of the incident in our next issue. Anyone present is being asked to call our incident hotline on 111-I-KNOW.

I realise some readers may have found that language offensive, and I’m sorry. Please don’t use that sort of language when children are present.

If you would like to share an excerpt of your work and publicise yourself / book, just drop me a line at authorsteveboseley (at) gmail (dot) com.

3 thoughts on “Fragment Friday: Spennyriver Dispatch Edition

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