This England

Councillor Ted Parkinson pledged that this year would be different.

"It is the start of a new four-year term and a chance to go forward. I know the past couple of years haven't been easy. It's been difficult and, at times, nasty, well, that's the past, and we can't change the past, so let's try and put it behind us.
"The answer is we can do a lot and we can achieve anything we want to if we work together. The question is how do we do it?"

Councillor Parkinson said he had a vision of Tooting Bec Underground station, London, for the TV programme Citizen Smith and Wolfie Smith shouting "Power to the people". - Hebden Bridge Times (Steve Bowick)

An infant school in Luton has stopped its pupils playing the playground game of kiss-chase, after complaints of "inappropriate" physical contact. As well as being regarded as inappropriate for the 216 pupils, aged from four to seven, the practice was also viewed as potentially unhealthy. - Guardian (Alison Granville)

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This article first appeared in the 31 May 1999 issue of the New Statesman, Between two mental universes