Archive for the ‘Bravery’ Category
What do you call a man with a seagull on his head? No, it’s not Cliff anymore, it’s Brian.
North West Evening Mail, 27 July 2013 (story):
Savage seagulls hospitalised a pensioner during the latest in a growing number of incidents across Cumbria.
Retired Brian Griffin was walking home from when he found himself confronted by angry seagulls near his home in Barrow.
The plucky pensioner was undeterred but as he continued on his way the birds struck, leaving him with injuries to his head which needed hospital treatment.
He said: “When I was halfway up Douglas Street this gull came whirling around me very close and was screaming in my face.
“And then there was another and another doing the same thing – it was like something out of Hitchcock’s The Birds. It was frightening.”
Mr Griffin said the birds eventually backed off and he staggered towards the Premier store where staff bandaged up his injuries before taking him to Furness General Hospital.
I wonder if this happened to Brian because he was strolling along with a bit of a chip on his shoulder?
Interestingly, this is the second flappy bird-related story featured on The Nether Regions where the victim has compared the incident to Alfred Hitchcock’s ‘The Birds’ (example one is here). A bit more imagination in future from our bird-savaged local news fodder, please.
Thank you to Lucy Ryan.
Sometimes the sanctity of local news is horribly soiled. All it takes is a quiet news day and a form of newsdesk desperation which means any old page-filler will do, regardless of how dubious its factual content or psychologically unstable its source. Suddenly your trusty local paper – which you rely on in hours of need for tales of A-road gridlock, locals in the dock or men flashing from under a frock – becomes a pantomime publication.
9 July 2013 was a particularly dark day for the Lewisham News Shopper.
Lewisham News Shopper, 9 July 2013 (story):
Catford fox horror for man on toilet
A CATFORD man was driven potty after being attacked by a fox which burst in on him as he sat on the toilet.
Anthony Schofield claims he was quietly going about his business in the little boys’ room on July 1 when the mangy creature strutted in before mauling him, his partner and his pet cat.
The startled 49-year-old leapt up from the bog with his trousers around his ankles before pursuing the creature around the living room in a farcical fox chase.
Mr Schofield, who lives in Ringstead Road, said: “I didn’t even have time to wipe myself.
“I just had to chase after it. It was so quick. The fox had pushed its nose through the door. I jumped off the toilet. In the meantime it had run into the front room and got the cat.
“It had the cat round the neck. She was in shock, bleeding from her face. It locked itself onto my arm but still had the cat as well. It was unbelievable – the strength in the little thing.
“There was blood everywhere. It was like a struggle for my life.”
The unemployed carpenter says he eventually managed to free himself from the animal’s jaws by hauling it outside – while it was still latched onto his arm.
He was treated at hospital for cuts and bruises while his 14-year-old rescue cat Jessie sustained facial injuries and is still too scared to enter the living room.
Just thank your lucky stars Mr Schofield survived his vulpine violation and was able to show off his voluptuous thighs in these ludicrous ‘999’-style photo reconstructions. What would Michael Buerk think? That’s what you should ask yourself every day – but especially today.
With thanks to Ben Chisnall, who will never relax on a toilet again.
It is every testosterone-splattered man’s dream to feature in the news as a have-a-go-hero who uses just one hand to floor attacker after attacker in a vicious street attack and escape unscathed. The dream came true for one pub landlord from Wisbech, in the Fens of Cambridgeshire, only to then come crashing down when it turned out the whole thing was a massive humongous fib.
Wisbech Standard, 20 February 2013 (story):
LIAR: The pub landlord who conned the world into believing he single-handedly fought off four muggers
A PUB landlord has admitted to police he lied about fighting off four attackers outside a Wisbech fish and chip shop.
The alleged attack – which made international news after John Wood, 37, first told his story to the Wisbech Standard – never happened.
The ‘heroic’ derring-do pub landlord from the Marshland Arms has even been forced to cough up an £80 fixed penalty notice for wasting police time.
How Wood received his wounds – seen by our reporter and photographer – is not known but police are assured he did NOT get them from fielding off attackers.
Wood had alleged that four men cornered him in an alleyway off Lynn Road, Wisbech, as he emerged from Frank’s Fish & Chip Shop. But, despite suffering a stab wound which he claimed required 18 stitches, the 37-year-old alleged he floored all four of his attackers – and left with his dinner intact.
Wood claimed he had trained in martial arts as a teenager and said the men “stopped me and demanded my phone and wallet. I told them if they wanted it, come and get it.
“They all came at me at once. I kicked two of them in the leg. I used to do a little bit of aikido and I remembered to go for the knees. They fell to the floor and couldn’t get up.
“As I did that another clipped me in the face. I turned around and hit him and he fell.”
He then went into detail about the attacked and claimed “I didn’t even drop the chips. “It was all done one-handed. They weren’t even squashed when I got home!”
So impressive. Such a shame then that when the chips were down, the landlord’s story didn’t add up and he had to face this humiliation in the local paper, throwing the holy sacrament of ‘news’ into total disarray.
You’d think that would be the end of the matter, but no: the landlord came back for more and the Wisbech Standard published a follow-up story with yet more comments from him in which he desperately maintains his innocence.
Shamed pub landlord insists attacks did happen (story):
SHAMED pub landlord John Wood insisted today he did fight off four attackers and only accepted an £80 fine for wasting police time “to get them off my back”.
Faced with being branded by police as a liar, the 37 year-old landlord of the Marshland Arms remains adamant he was attacked outside Franks’ fish and chip shop.
“The reason I accepted a fine for wasting police time was because I wanted the whole thing finished,” he told me.
Two detectives quizzed him, he said, and explained they had examined CCTV in the area and would find no footage of the alleged attack.
“They asked if I had caused the injuries to myself- asked if my fiancée had done it or had the kids done it by accident,” he said.
Mr Wood said: “It was the most bizarre moment of my life being interviewed by people who didn’t believe me. Where did they think the injuries came from for goodness sake?
“I was told due to them actually spending time on the case I would have to a pay a fine. I said anything just to get this bloody matter finished. So they wrote up a statement, I signed it and left thinking that was over.
“Now these lies are being bandied about.”
A police spokesman said: “Officers began to investigate the allegations but soon realised his version of events did not add up.
“The 37 year old admitted he lied when he was interviewed yesterday.”
A real Wisbech whodunnit. I just don’t know what or who to believe any more.
Thanks to Peter Cragg.
Bolton awoke to the news today that customers are literally flocking to a local shop to get a glimpse of a wonder egg that has sent shock waves across the world. Well, the hen and grocery worlds at least.
The Bolton News, 05 February 2013 (story)
ONE hen has performed “eggs-tradinary” — after laying one of Britain’s biggest eggs.
Note to editor: if you’re happy to publish an article la(i)den with egg-scruciating egg puns, please ensure that the first one is not only hard-hitting but is also correctly spelt and makes sense.
But I digress.
The egg, which came from a chicken at an allotment in Breightmet, is four times the usual size of an egg.
It weighs 6.75oz (191g) is 8.25in in circumference and is 4in tall.
Normally, a large egg in the UK would weight about 73g.
Now I’m interested, tell me more.
Terry Paulcrompton was so “eggs-static” when he discovered the giant egg he took it to show his pal Laszlo Hamar, owner of nearby Wise Buys Discount Store in Bury Road. Mr Hamar said: “It’s the biggest egg I have ever seen. It’s absolutely enormous.
Quiet at the back.
Terry was really shocked when he found it, and when I saw it I couldn’t believe it either. “We have been looking on the internet and we think it’s one the biggest eggs ever laid in England.”
Not just the largest egg laid in England, Terry, but the largest in Britain!
The largest egg laid in Britain weighed in at 6.6oz and was produced by a Rhode Island chicken last year.
That, if my maths is correct, is a whole 0.15oz lighter than Terry’s find. Like Neil Kinnock, Kris Akabusi must be All Right-ing at the news.
And it’s not just the two pals that are egg-cited by their find.
…visitors have been flocking to view the egg, which is now on display at the shop.
Mr Hamar, aged 55, from Ainsworth, said: “Lots of people have been coming in to take photos of it.”
“Everyone is really shocked when they see it.”
Shell shocked, one can only assume. Much like the poor mother hen.
This could have ended in horrible tragedy, but it didn’t, and that means we’re allowed to laugh at it.
Reading Post, 6 November 2010 (story):
Mum and daughter rescued from bog
A mother and teenage daughter were rescued when they became trapped in a bog in South Reading this afternoon.
A police helicopter located the pair who were walking a Jack Russell dog in the flood plain of the River Kennet near Big Yellow Self Storage in Rose Kiln Lane.
The daughter had sunk to her chest in the muddy bog and her mother was lying next to her with one leg submerged.
Because the girl was in such danger, a firefighter and police officer entered the bog to rescue her at once.
I bet that’s the last time this pair will be reaching for their copy of Flood Plain Strolls of Britain when they fancy a stretch of the legs.
The story on the Reading Post website features a gripping video of the rescue bid, replete with commentary by concerned emergency services staff. It’s a must-watch if you’re amused by the idea of seeing four Power Rangers needing their maximum strength to drag this big old unit from a bog:
Crew manager Crook said there was a real danger she would sink blelow the surface.
He said: “It is particulary dangerous if you keep moving about. It is the worst thing you can do.”
He added: “The dog was rescued first. He hadn’t sunk in at all.”
In that case, you’d think the dog would have helped. But no. So much for being man’s best friend.
Sometimes, a barefaced crime is the easiest to get away with.
Not in this case, mind.
Maidenhead Advertiser, 4 October 2010 (story):
Bungling burglar stole neighbour’s curtains for his home
It was curtains for a burglar who was rumbled after he stole his next door neighbour’s nets and put them up in his own window.
Jason Williams was caught out when his neighbours spotted the curtains and asked why he had got them.
The 38-year-old was jailed for burglary for two years and five months at Reading Crown Court on Friday for the crime, which his own barrister described as ‘not very sophisticated’.
He broke down boarding on the home and stole the net curtains, tools, two glass ashtrays and some lamb steaks from the freezer.
Perhaps he just wasn’t barefaced enough; he should’ve put the lamb steaks in the ashtrays and left them on the window sill between the curtains and the glass. He’ll know for next time.
The frenzied, overworked nature of modern day journalism means news reporters must ensure they have no flies on them.
Except, that is, for when their paper sends them to cover a plague of flies. This signalled the collapse of society in the unfortunate Lancashire villages of New Longton and Whitestake.
Thanks to swat spotter Lucy Longhurst for the story.
Lancashire Evening Post, 20 July 2010 (story):
Village plagued by flies
Millions of flies are making life a misery for villagers in rural Lancashire.
A local pub has been forced to slash its opening hours and families in New Longton and Whitestake say they are under siege from swarms of insects. It has become so bad The Farmers Arms, in Wham Lane, is closing at certain times of the day.
And a customer from Penwortham, who visited on Saturday, said: “The girls in there were swatting the flies away. They are opening for a few hours, then closing.
“It got worse and worse and we ended up having to rush our meal.”
Thankfully, the locals aren’t ones to moan:
John Capstick, who runs Buena Vista Furniture Services in nearby Long Moss Lane, said: “It’s been absolutely awful.The floors are littered with them. They get into everything.”
Claire Sutton, from Orchard Avenue, said: “Rooms were covered in flies and there’s a constant buzzing noise. We vacuumed up 114 in one night.”
Neighbour Anne Carter added: “We are killing hundreds a night. They’re everywhere.”
And childminder Deborah Lonsdale added: “It’s been horrendous. “I’ve lived here 22 years and never seen anything like this. Something has got to be done.”
A spokesman for brewery Mitchells and Butlers said: “We are coping with the situation and have been able to keep the carvery in operation … with a full clean down of the pub and carvery in between each service.”
The carvery must go on. Finally, a bit of Blitz Spirit.