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22 February 2023

This England: The best a cat can get

This column – which, though named after a line in Shakespeare’s “Richard II”, refers to the whole of Britain – has run in the NS since 1934.

By New Statesman

A “phantom cat shaver” is on the loose, fear owners.

Victoria Griffiths, 29, of Chatham, Kent, now keeps her tabby, George, ten, indoors after he returned home with a large bald patch.

“I was so angry some nasty human decided to shave my cat,” she said. Another cat in the town had its hind legs shaved.
(Amanda Welles)


McDonald’s has been blasted for its “tasteless” advertisement opposite a crematorium.

The sign promotes the chain’s chicken burger and reads “McCrispy”. But it is right opposite Penmount Crematorium in Cornwall. McDonald’s has said it will remove the advert.
Daily Express
(Steve Morley)

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[See also: “On supporting farmers, McDonald’s sets a high standard”]

An eggs-travagant theft

A man who stole 200,000 Cadbury Creme Eggs has been convicted in court.

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Joby Pool was surrounded by a mountain of the foil-wrapped chocolate when police caught up with him. Recognising he was foiled too, he surrendered to officers with his hands up.

Pool, 32, used a stolen lorry with false plates to snatch a trailer containing the eggs from an industrial unit in Telford.

West Mercia Police said its officer – hunting someone “presumably purporting to be the Easter bunny” – had “saved Easter”.
BBC West Midlands
(Christopher Rossi)

[See also: From the NS archive: Easter Sunday in the Highlands]

Healing songs

People in the Cornish town of Lostwithiel have turned to song in a desperate effort to recruit a new doctor.

More than 500 people (some musically gifted, others not) have appeared in a pop video urging a GP to join a local practice.

The Guardian
(Daragh Brady)

Each printed entry receives a £5 book token. Entries to or on a postcard to This England.

[See also: Can you ever escape from London? I doubt it]

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This article appears in the 22 Feb 2023 issue of the New Statesman, The Undoing of Nicola Sturgeon