THE GOBBING GUARDIAN
"  THE VOICE OF SANITY AND INDEPENDENCE."
Distributed free every Thursday to households without large dogs in Wazzocks End, Little Gobbing, Clack Heath and Gobbing Moor.

ISSUE No 347:
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ILLEGAL GOAT CART RACING MAKES UNWELCOME RETURN!



UNPRECEDENTED SCENES OF CARNAGE IN GRIMVIEW PARK -
CAN YOU IDENTIFY THESE DESPERADOES? 


This was the sickening scene in Grimview Park last Tuesday afternoon, when a Guardian photographer obtained exclusive proof of the unwelcome re-emergence of this dangerous so-called "sport".
Note the gleeful smiles on these young ruffians' faces and the casual way in which their helpless canine victim is being cruelly poked - must we, as a town, endure this savage, beastly spectacle yet again? It seems only last year - in fact, it was only last year - that the council stepped in to ban this most dangerous of pastimes. Many older readers will recall the notorious "Abattoir Corner Massacre" of 1957, when a pile-up of carts caused irrepairable damage to the Fosgrave Memorial Horsetrough and three exhausted goats had to be put out to grass. This MUST NOT be allowed to happen again - rest assured that the Guardian will boldly lead the campaign against it.
If YOU know the identity of the girls pictured above, or have witnessed these shocking scenes, grass them up to the police at once. Unleash "Trubshaw's Terrors" on these louts without delay!

TEENAGE PARTY SHOCK HORROR!


Harry and Lil survey yesterday's damage.

Little did Harry and Lil Thimbledick realise that an apparently innocent teenage party would transform their luxury £25,000 bungalow in prestigious Hangman's Lane, Gobbing Moor into a wasteland. But, on returning from celebrating their dog's birthday with a slap-up blowout at the Delhi Belly Indian restaurant, a shocking sight awaited them.
Unknown to them, the Fisworths' children, Garth and Cleopatra, had taken advantage of their absence to invite their friends round!
Harry, unfortunately, had been unfamiliar with the recent work of Professor Yaffle at WEU. This proved conclusively that the destructive power of young persons between the ages of ten and eighteen is far greater than had previously been thought. Prof Yaffle calculated that only six were needed to replicate the effect of a cruise missile on the average suburban home, leading a surprising number of local parents to "volunteer" their offspring for military research.
When approached with this latest evidence, Prof Yaffle said: "This is relatively minor damage - I estimate three to four young people only. Many more would have uprooted trees and interrupted power supplies over most of the Wazzocks End area. We have been VERY lucky here."
Harry and Lil don't think so! In a tearful plea tonight, Lil said: "Please, if anyone out there knows where my children are hiding, please...shoot them on sight."

SALMON CAUGHT - IN GOBBING CUT!

Astonished wildlife experts were flocking to the Gobbing Navigation this week after news spread on the internet of a well-known local angler's surprise coup.
"I were reet amazed!" spluttered the newly-famous Dave Bletherwick, 72. "I'm jiggered if I can remember anything like this happening before, though I do get these blackouts. Where am I?"
Dave, 74, was thought to be fishing for old pram wheels, supermarket trolleys and dead dogs in the Dreary Bridge area when he made the astonishing and unprecedented discovery.
"I just stuck my net in when I noticed a sort of silvery flash just below the surface, and out it came!" claimed Dave. "I must have disturbed it on the bottom, like. What's more, it were reet delicious! The missus and me ate it the very same night. Aye, every last bit!"
Conservationists were naturally disappointed at the consequent lack of evidence of this startling discovery, though Dave, 71, is thought to have been bribed with strong liquor into handing over the tin for further analysis.
"Next week, I'll be looking for tuna!" Dave, 73, announced last night. We wish him every success.
MISSING HIPPO - MYSTERY DEEPENS
Tearful kiddies ask: "Where's Herbert?"

Tonight, an aura of mystery surrounds the whereabouts of Herbert the Hippo, the popular animal star of Gobbing Safari Park.
An advert in this very publication last week sparked off a massive wave of protest with angry mobs, sometimes as many as five strong, besieging the park offices. Miss Gladys Froot, veteran peace campaigner, anti-everything protester and general pain in the butt, was naturally at the forefront of these disturbances despite her well-publicised aversion to animals being kept in captivity.
"It's wrong!" Miss Froot was quoted as ranting last Monday. "Herbert was well loved by these dear sweet kiddies, and I demand answers!"
Herbert was, of course, famous for his amusing but ferocious charges at the perimeter fence whenever a particularly ugly child attracted his attention, as well as his "lovable" habit of greedily consuming lollipop sticks, cigarette ends, handbags and other personal items which ended up in his enclosure  - all without apparent ill-effect.
Yesterday, your intrepid reporter was granted an exclusive interview by the manager of Gobbing Safari Park, Mr Bert Gristle.
"Is it true, as some malicious elements have suggested, that Herbert was abducted by Pratforth's?"
"Herbert, as clearly stated, has gone to a far better place than this du...sorry, he's gone to Chipping Sodbury Safari Park."
"And are you quite happy about Pratforth's taking over the park?"
"Of course, it's mutually beneficial - we get lorryloads of stale pies to feed to the animals, and...well, Pratforth's are quite satisfied."
"And can all Herbert's fans visit him at his new home?"
"Er...possibly. Of course, we have recently introduced the exciting new "nocturnal creatures" feature, so the punters still get great value for their fifty quid per car admission."
"These creatures - as I understand it, they hide themselves away during the day, and the park closes every day at dusk. There have been mutterings about these cages actually being empty."
"What's the matter with you? Have you got no ****** imagination?"
At that point, feeling threatened, your reporter left hurriedly.
However, this matter shall not rest! We vow to track Herbert down - watch this newspaper.

NEWS IN BRIEF -

MARCHING BAND -
DISCRIMINATION?

Sid Fanshaw of Brimble End today caused a frenzied reaction when he accused the Wazz Valley  Royals marching band - which dates back to 1977 and has, with its tuneless tooting and shambolic routines, given much innocent laughter to the public ever since - of discriminating against him.
"It's true, we turned him down," explained leader Vera Lampwick. "Our girls are usually between 6 and 12 and wear frilly miniskirts. Sid is male, aged 56 and has a bad problem with personal hygiene. The children were also rather  frightened of his enormous moustache."
"It's plain discrimination!" Sid later thundered at our hapless reporter. "Sex, age, the lot. But I might settle out of court if they're offering the right amount of wonga."
When the offer was put to Vera, her response was "He can go and **** himself." So, no change there, then.


"YORKSHIRE IN BLOOM" BLOW

The town's chances of walking off with a place in this year's competition were dealt a severe blow on Monday, when the civic decorative dandelion clump on the pavement outside the town hall was trampled by a careless pensioner. An arrest is expected.
COUNCILLOR BOGTHWAITE
"  CAUGHT IN THE ACT"
 SAYS FURIOUS WIFE
 

As we went to press, a storm cloud appeared to be brewing above the head of popular
councillor for Gobbing Central, Ray Bogthwaite. Ray was recently voted Chair of the Ways and Means sub-committee, but that didn't stop his suspicious wife from making contact with the "Guardian" when she arrived home early to discover a scene of utter debauchery.
"There was a fracas at bingo that night," Maisie sobbed as she blubbed the whole sordid tale. "But when I arrived home unexpectedly, what did I find? A scene of utter degradation that would have shamed Sodom and Gomorrah. And with my own sister, too."  
We pressed Ray for an explanation, but found his incoherent blather utterly unconvincing. "Only one glass, she had!" he shouted. "One glass isn't enough to make a grown woman pass out!" When we pointed out that a PINT glass of brandy might indeed have a soporific effect, Ray seemed stuck for an answer.
The unfortunate councillor has been caught trouserless in several odd situations in the past year - the Girl Guides' trip to Bridlington, the YWCA Christmas party, and twice behind the bacon counter in the co-op.

(Ray has asked us to point out that he can still be contacted for normal council business c/o Fang The Chihuahua, the kennel, behind no 34 Gobbing Moor Drive, and that the plasters will be coming off soon.)


MISSING MAYORAL LIMOUSINE - MYSTERY SOLVED AT LAST!
 



It's not that we like blowing our own trumpet, and to be fair it's not often that we get the chance - but today we can publish REAL proof of the dismal fate that awaited Wazzocks End's most famous motor.
It was while our crack team of investigative journalists was seeking proof of alleged thefts from the Crud Lane Nuclear Waste Site and kiddies' playground from the relative safety of the Gobbing Arms, that our ace reporter noticed the sad sight of the once-immaculate car abandoned behind "World of Chips". Though the car appeared to be slightly less than roadworthy, it was clearly the vehicle that the late Alderman Pringle won in a late-night poker game back in 1961.
Since then, every Mayor of Wazzocks End has had use of the vehicle - until, that is, it went missing outside Big Abdul's Kebab-orama early last Saturday morning while the current mayor was collecting a late-night snack..
It is thought to have been stripped of anything useable - the famously luxuriously-stocked mayoral drinks cabinet, unsurprisingly, had vanished completely, along with the civic "adult" DVD collection. So, can the grand old Rolls be restored to its former glory? We asked Bernie Prang of Runt and Dogsbreath, the well-known firm which has held the lucrative servicing contract on the mayoral transport since time immemorial.
"Sure thing, guv," he muttered, scratching his head, after his recovery team (see above) had fought the local kids for the remains and narrowly triumphed. "I'd give that an MOT, no trouble - it's got its wheels, ain't it? Good enough for me."
When pressed, Bernie added: "Yeah, we can get that sorted, like. New tyres, electrics, engine, upholstery and paint job. And that's for starters. It'll cost, mind." We're sure the council tax payers of Wazzocks End will be delighted with the news.
STOP PRESS - As we went to press, rumours were flying around that a man had been detained in connection with the theft and was being kicked around the cells while "helping" with police enquiries. We are unable to confirm, as yet, that it was a Mr Prang of Gobbing Moor.

TOWN "WIDE OPEN" TO ATTACK

Shocking revelations concerning the town's lack of preparedness for civil emergencies was highlighted this week at a meeting of South-West Yorkshire County Council. Police Fuhrer "Ironfist" Trubshaw was outraged when the chairman admitted leaving Wazzocks End out of council-wide planning against nuclear emergencies and the like by explaining that, in his opinion, "Nobody in that crap-hole would notice any s*****g difference. In fact, a couple of megatons going off in Wazzocks End should improve the look of the place no end. It couldn't get worse."
"Cheeky Bugger!" "Ironfist" later raged. "Only last year we applied for two extra buckets and a stirrup pump for delivery in 2010/2011! That shows how seriously we take the situation."
THREE-TIMES-A-NIGHT MAN - "I'M SO ASHAMED"

Ted Throstle of Grinding Shop Lane has finally broken down and admitted his shameful secret.
"It's always been the same, ever since I were a lad," he sobbed. "You know how strong the urge is at that age, and I loved it from the very first time, back behind the tannery, when I were no more than fifteen. Since then, I've never been able to stop. Obsession, you might call it. The thing is - I've never been able to manage it more than three times a night! My mates just laugh at me, but I've tried it and been sick. Please help me."
Naturally, we put Ted in touch with the Alcohology Foundation, which has very kindly promised to get Ted up from three to a more normal twelve pints or more a night by Christmas.
MORE ACADEMIC GLORY FOR WEU

Yet another triumph has been reported as WEU's prestigious DRIBO (Department for Reseach Into the Bleeding Obvious) gains funding for further ongoing research into the vexing question of why most humans spend around one-third of their lives prone, with their eyes shut in a quaint form of "suspended animation".
Prof Vi Votsisname, popular yet tyrannical head of the department, announced yesterday "It's fantastic news! When this important work is complete, we hope to tap the lottery fund again and progress to the puzzle of 'Kylie Trouser Syndrome', whereby most male students experience some stress and discomfort in the front trouser area when watching non-stop Kylie videos, while female students remain immune.
We've been baffled by this for some time."
GLADYS TRIUMPHS AGAIN!

For the third successive year, Gladys Flywheel of Coke Works Lane has trounced all her competitors in the WE Women's Institute baking contest, Spongefest 2008.
This year, Gladys's Victoria sponge weighed in at an impressive and jaw-breaking four pounds, thirteen ounces, beating off strong competition from such stalwarts as Vera Fripp and Ethel Tinkle by several ounces.
"I'm thrilled!" Gladys announced. "I've never broken the four and a half pound barrier before!"
Gladys's husband, popular bus conductor Ted, was quite overcome by the occasion and had to be revived for some three hours in the snug of the "Ratcatchers Arms."
"I look forward to tasting it!" he lied convincingly. "Just as soon as I get my new super-strength dentures in."
MARGARINE "POPULARITY SOARING"

Mavis Schlock of Signal Box Crescent has vowed to devote her remaining years to the service of what she describes as "this delicately-flavoured and nutritious wonder-food". Mavis has always been an avid collector of margarine labels, and now has a massive selection of almost thirty assorted wrappers - some from as far away as Wales and Birmingham - displayed proudly in her council maisonette. Now, Mavis is determined to found the "Margarine Circle" to focus attention upon this often unfairly maligned muck.
"Margarine - it's spreading!" Mavis chortled last week. "Spreading, see? It's a joke!" With a sense of humour like that, Mavis's campaign seems destined for success. That or - far more likely - oblivion.
GOBBING SOUTH  BY-ELECTION - ANOTHER WIN FOR RULING PARTY

VIC SLABB - "WE KNOW WHERE THEY LIVE!"

A close result had been predicted, but the result last Thursday turned out to be a real nail-biter. At the last moment, there appears to have been a surge of
support for the "Restore Feudalism" candidate, The Hon. Gavin Trumping. Those who have followed politics in Wazzocks End for many a decade were stunned by the result - especially given that Gavin was a complete outsider, unknown in the town, and openly admitted that he was standing "for a wager".
Vic Slabb, the Ruling Party winner, was openly critical of his opponent's supporters. In the past, voters who defied the party line have seen their council taxes mysteriously doubled and their children reallocated to Gobbing Moor High-security "Special Needs" School. All Mr Slabb would say on Friday morning was "We know where they live, the b*****ds."


 THE HON. GAVIN TRUMPING, GCSE AND BAR - "DIDN'T ONE DO WELL?"

FULL RESULTS BELOW


 Victor Maureen Slabb (Ruling  Party) 947 *
 Hon. Gavin Trumping (Restore  Feudalism) 910   
 Reg Spytt (Free Beer For All  Party) 877                    
 Dick Stiffy (Non-stop Party) 443
 Norman Spliff (Groovy Party) 355
 Ranting Syd Plonk (Bomb  Lancashire ) 286
 Arthur Dripping (Looneytunes) 199
 Mister X (Neo-fascist  Radical Punk)  127
 Joe Clog (Black Pudding For All)  97
 Arnold Fripp (Bring Back the  Stocks)  32
 Ken Froot (Liberal Democrat) 1 **
* Elected. ** Not elected.

CORRECTION

It's not often that we make mistakes here on the "Guardian", and it's very unusual indeed for us to admit them. Nevertheless, we would like to point out that our sports report last week was slightly inaccurate. 19 stone rugby star "Slasher" Krupp should have been described as playing like a "mad flanker" and not, as we inadvertently said, a "sad wanker". The editor is more than pleased to correct this, as he would like to keep his remaining teeth.

UFO ABDUCTION - LOCAL BARMPOT SPEAKS

The controversy over the seemingly abnormal number of UFO sightings over Gobbing Moor intensified yesterday - local mystic Phoebe Frump has claimed numerous visitations over the years, though the frequency with which these occured within half an hour of closing time has aroused much scepticism. 
Now, she claims to have been abducted by aliens, plied with unfamiliar yet soothing liquids and subjected to highly personal yet strangely pleasant probing before being returned to Earth somewhere in the vicinity of Scotch Corner.

"It was early on Saturday evening," Phoebe  told our reporter. "I was walking home, alone, round the Clack Lane roundabout, when this eerie, bright light enveloped me. There was an odd throbbing noise, almost like an engine. I couldn't move! Suddenly, I felt myself being lifted from my feet and hustled into this strange, noisy space vehicle. Everything was spinning as we accelerated away."
Released in a dazed state, Phoebe was eventually able to hitch back to Wazzocks End bearing a souvenir of her experiences.
"It's an odd garment, long and without any apparent holes for limbs," Deirdre enthused. "Which shows what odd creatures they were. Almost like wool in texture, it's coloured in alternate bands of black and white. I've never seen anything quite like it - obviously, no earthly creature could get himself inside it."
Fascinated and bewildered, we pressed Deirdre for further details: "There were many of them, all dressed alike and speaking in a language I couldn't understand. They made crude signs that they'd travelled far and had engaged in observing some kind of contest. What, I don't know, but they seemed glad to be headed homewards towards...well, the best guess I can make is 'Jor-di-land.' Where in the universe that might be, I don't know."

(The Guardian has contacted Newcastle United Supporters Club to see if anyone's reported their scarf missing.)

WAZZOCKS END - AS IT USED TO BE!



How many of our older readers, we wonder, can recall the astonishing sight of the Pratforth's Piemen morris dancing team, seen here in a 1934 snap? In a brave - some said downright foolhardy - attempt to foster dying folk traditions, as well as drum up publicity for his pork-related products, Old Jebediah Pratforth sponsored the local morris team for five seasons back in the 30s.
The pie-shaped headgear, anathema to morris purists, did not prove stable enough to defy the more rugged and athletic hoofing matches to which the WE men were addicted - especially as the evening wore on and the pints of refreshing D and S mild were chugged down.
The motto ("Stop me and fry one") was also less than successful, and eventually Jebediah realised that the very concept of morris dancing was quite ridiculous enough without adding the silly hats.
The final straw came when some local wag coined the soubriquet "Ku Klux Flan" and the whole barmy scheme was promptly abandoned.

ANOTHER CORRECTION

We would also like to make clear that well known local baglady, al fresco dance enthusiast and health hazard Monica Corm, who normally resides on the fourth bench along, Grimview Park, actually informed us that a ruffian had "stolen her sherry" and not, as we said, "stolen her cherry". 
Unlikely as this sounded at the time, it was printed in good faith.


MARKET - "ABSOLUTE DUMP" SAYS COUNCILLOR CRIMP

The entire town lay stunned last Friday when Edna Crimp, the sole female councillor, branded Wazzocks End market an "absolute dump, a disgrace, a place where pigs would be ashamed to shop."
We're not sure that pigs would shop anywhere, but the point was well made. As can be seen in our recent photo, below, the front of the Co-op has been in dire need of structural repair for some decades.
"Nonsense!" Bill Flibbert, manager, retorted when interviewed. "Just a lick of paint is required, and that's planned for our next refit in 2012. We'll be fine till then." Other shoppers were not so sure - could this be the reason that Wazzocks End is losing trade to other, more forward-looking metropolises such as Barnsley and Rotherham? We need answers - right now!

OBITUARY.

Ron (Dodgy-knees) Flitt


It is with some sadness but a great deal of amusement that we announce the recent death of Ron Flitt, one-time Leader of the Council. For several years in the 1980s, Ron styled himself as "President" of the "Peoples' Republic of Wazzockstan", causing certain elements within the council, such as the Planning Committee, to rise in open revolt. It was at this period that all edged weapons and firearms of .303 calibre and above were banned from the chamber.
Eventually, factions within Ron's own Ruling Party, tired of his authoritarian style as well as his chronic halitosis, overturned him in a near-bloodless coup. Miffed, Ron retired to live in his pigeon loft and take up drinking full-time - a task he undertook with some distinction. Before long, however, even his own pigeons tired of his non-stop political ranting and took to expressing their opinion in their own distinctive way.
In his declining years, the embittered ex-mayor lived in a barrel behind Tesbury's Gobbing Moor Road store, from which he was regularly banned on account of his eccentric behaviour as well as his violent shoplifting sprees. As can be seen from our photo, Ron was always ready to offer unwary passers-by a cheerful drink and a bout of fisticuffs, though not necessarily in that order.
He leaves a barrel and a pile of empties
.
Arthur Scrint

Arthur ("Boring") Scrint has passed away, aged 86. He was the conductor and last survivor of the final night of the Wazzocks End Municipal Tramway in 1952, when an "exuberant and drunken" crowd toppled the last tram on the Clack Lane East via Wazzgate Route into the Gobbing Navigation. 
He proudly bequeathed the finest collection of tram tickets in the Borough to the Central Museum, which rapidly "passed them on to another department", thought to be Refuse and Municipal Tips.
The GOBBING GUARDIAN is published by the WAZZOCK MEDIA AND ABATTOIRS GROUP, a wholly-owned figment of Roy Bateman's warped imagination.
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