The Nether Regions

The blog that slips an affectionate hand between the thighs of the regional media

Snow: chaos, pandemonium and Armageddon

with 6 comments

The most positive thing about the recent cold snap sub-freezing epoch is that folk who are opinionated and housebound – many of them quite literally prisoners in their own homes – have been left with nothing to do but write to local newspapers.

A common side-effect of getting increasingly hysterical in your living room over a period of two weeks is to forget the difference between ‘climate’ and ‘weather’. Thanks to Matt Kilsby for highlighting the first letter.

Bolton Evening News, 11 January 2010:

WITH regard to recent weather of snow and ice, according to the BBC the worst for 30 years, what has happened to the global warming con? It’s all gone quiet!

Don’t believe it. It is just another scare tactic by the Government to raise more taxes.

It’s like the space industry suddenly finding traces of water on Mars when their finances are due for review. How much does that cost? Scrap it all and we could save billions. There are always know-alls trying to justify this nonsense.

When I was a kid, the fog was so thick you couldn’t see in front of your nose, but no mention then of global warming.

The atmosphere is better than it has ever been. No more smoking factory chimneys, a fraction of coal-burning house fires, cleaner, fresher air. It’s always the ones who shout the loudest that get heard most.

James Birch, Sharples

Yorkshire Evening Post, 9 Jan 2010:

HOW long before Gordon Brown arranges a G20 summit on the problem of global freezing?

David Woosnam, Woodrow Park,  Scartho, Grimsby.

Some have adopted a more local view of the whole affair and simply taken the opportunity to engage in the time-honoured tradition of bashing the local council.

Stretford & Urmston Messenger, 7 January 2010:

NO side roads in Urmston, Flixton or Davyhulme have been gritted and they are still frozen and dangerous.

A friend fell and went to Trafford Hospital where they had a five-hour wait with dozens of other older people who had slipped and got injured on the pavements.

What on earth are we paying tax for? What services? It’s disgusting.

June Connoly-Waldron, Urmston

Peterborough Evening Telegraph, 23 December 2009:

Here we are again, and another bad dose of ice and snow paralyses this useless council. Once again, pavements are untreated causing lethal conditions. […]

Easier to waste a fortune on idiotic fountains in the city centre, rather than ensure the safety of the council tax payer. The only way this council will learn, is when they get swamped with personal injury claims. Perhaps then they’ll wake up.

Paul Lindfield
Riverside Mead,

YEAH! Maybe when they get swamped with personal injury claims they’ll finally wake up! And then they won’t have any budget for gritting the streets at all next winter. Or indeed a budget to maintain a water supply to ‘idiotic fountains’. Excellent.

And to think they’re saying the people of Haiti are having it tough…

It seems we finally have a solution to all of this mess, though. Regional letters page regulars up and down the country have cast aside all geographical and tribal differences to arrive at a unified, common sense view of what should be done.

The Shields Gazette, 8 Jan 2010:

Get yobs to grit streets

I THINK it is disgusting that the side streets and pavements have not been gritted by South Tyneside Council during this cold spell.

If it is a shortage of grit I can understand, but if it is a shortage of manpower then I have a solution.

Get all the yobs on Asbos and those that have been sentenced to do community service hours, give them a shovel, and get them clearing the pavements.

Then they will be doing their duty to the community.

John Rene Van Haezendonck,
South Shields

Sheffield Star, 11 January 2010:

DURING this current bad spell of weather, why aren’t the relevant authorities using anti-social idiots on community orders to the advantage of the communities they cause havoc to, by giving them a hi-viz jacket and a spade and getting the paths and pavements cleared?

We only see these clowns when it’s sunny and there’s a few flowers to plant.

No doubt there’s a legal or health and safety regulation that would prevent this from happening, or, God forbid, we may be infringing on their civil liberties.

There are so many wasters hanging around the streets of Sheffield, complaining that there’s nothing to do, which is why they resort to crime. Well, here’s your chance to put things right.

Steve Buss

Barnsley Chronicle, 8 January 2010:

I HAVE just been up Park Road, to the top of the park and back down Warren Quarry Lane.The pavements were covered in thick uneven ice, lethal. I am disgusted at the council, which has done nothing to make our pavements safe. […]

I disagree with the council when it claims to be the best gritter in South Yorkshire. If that is the case, God help the rest.

I went out and it only took me five minutes to clear six yards of pathway. If every household did the same, it would be a lot safer for everyone. Or what about all the fit people on benefits, could they not be employed at such times?

P Mitchell, Wood Street, Barnsley

So there we have it; that is that. If you’re an ‘anti-social idiot’ (what’s so bad about people who keep themselves to themselves?) or a ‘fit person on benefits’ (and yes, that includes you, Miss Single Mother Already Working Part Time) you can expect to be out clearing the streets next time snowfall strikes.

It may only be a short-term solution, though, because it sounds like Kevin Maguire of Hanover Street in Batley is planning a groundbreaking appearance on Dragons’ Den in 30-years-and-a-few-days’ time.

Yorkshire Evening Post, 9 Jan 2010:

IN just over 30 years’ time, a generation of today’s children will be telling their children of the winter of 2010. As they do so, a hovercraft will be removing snow from the streets where they live. Yes, time moves on.

Kevin Maguire, Hanover Street, Batley.

Thanks for that.


Written by Paddy

January 16, 2010 at 1:10 pm

6 Responses

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  1. “The best gritter in South Yorkshire”: what a feather in the cap that must be for a Local Authority. Forget National Indicators and customer service stars, the best gritter accolade is the one that they all want at the end of season award ceremony.

    Furthermore, it’s people like you, John Rene Van Haezendonck, that represents everything that is wrong with this country today.


    January 16, 2010 at 3:35 pm

  2. “Get yobs to grit streets”



    January 16, 2010 at 11:26 pm

  3. I suppose the ‘Best Gritter in South Yorkshire’ accolade is probably the local authority highway maintenance equivalent of the ‘Outstanding Contribution to Music’ Brit award. Can’t believe they gave it to Bob Geldof / Rotherham Metropolitan Council in 2005, etc.


    January 17, 2010 at 5:16 pm

  4. How does Kev McGuire have such detailed knowledge of the future? Just over 30 years is a precise prediction. Is he a time lord? Or does he know of a secret government 31 year embargo on hovercraft plough technology?

    FYI FFS A hovercraft is probably the worst vehicle for towing or ploughing. No purchase. What with it hovering off the ground. I think Kev might just be a guy with an obsession for hovercrafts.


    January 22, 2010 at 7:22 am

  5. Their wish is Thames Valley Probation Service’s command:

    Are the commenters happy? Are they bollocks.


    January 23, 2010 at 12:25 pm

  6. ‘Now Thames Valley Probation wants YOUR ideas of where you think the offenders should help out next.’

    The number of comments calling for them to ‘fill in potholes’ is marvellous. It combines two of my favourite knee-jerk reactions.


    January 24, 2010 at 9:37 pm

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