Support 100 years of independent journalism.

This England: Llama alarm

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 burglar raiding a farm was caught by police – because he stopped to feed a llama called Larry. James Fisher of Duffryn, Newport, was captured on CCTV at Raglan Farm Park and identified by officers. The 30-year-old was jailed for two years at Cardiff Crown Court after admitting six raids that netted him a £6,000 haul.

Metro (Amanda Welles)


Home sweet home

A bus was evacuated in Bedminster after a man threw a cheesecake at the driver. He chucked the strawberry-flavoured dessert when the 24 service stopped outside an Asda. A Reddit user posted: “On the replacement, less cakey bus, I heard someone explain the incident with the phrase: ‘Bedminster, innit.’”

Bristol Live (Julian Baggini)

Sign up for The New Statesman’s newsletters Tick the boxes of the newsletters you would like to receive. Quick and essential guide to domestic and global politics from the New Statesman's politics team. The best of the New Statesman, delivered to your inbox every weekday morning. The New Statesman’s global affairs newsletter, every Monday and Friday. A handy, three-minute glance at the week ahead in companies, markets, regulation and investment, landing in your inbox every Monday morning. Our weekly culture newsletter – from books and art to pop culture and memes – sent every Friday. A weekly round-up of some of the best articles featured in the most recent issue of the New Statesman, sent each Saturday. A weekly dig into the New Statesman’s archive of over 100 years of stellar and influential journalism, sent each Wednesday. Sign up to receive information regarding NS events, subscription offers & product updates.
I consent to New Statesman Media Group collecting my details provided via this form in accordance with the Privacy Policy


Muffin top

A woman is planning a nearly naked horse ride through the streets of Gloucestershire to raise money for Macmillan Cancer Support. Christie McLean said: “This is taking me well out of my comfort zone as it goes without saying, I sport a fair amount of love handles, cellulite, a muffin top and gravity has taken over.”

Stroud News (Daragh Brady)


Fat cat

A cat who piled on weight during the lockdowns when his owners gave him extra treats has been put on a special diet and exercise programme.

Colin weighed 1st 5lb, almost double an average adult cat’s weight, when he arrived at the Cats Protection centre in Norfolk.

Yorkshire Post (Michael Meadowcroft)

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

[See also: This England: Flight of fancy]

This article appears in the 26 May 2021 issue of the New Statesman, The new Toryism