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20 October 2021

This England: Attack of the clones

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

Attack of the clones

A judge rejected 28 couples’ divorces because they gave “absolutely identical” reasons for their failed marriages. The cases were referred from Bury St Edmunds Family Court to the High Court after they all used the same wording – claiming “the respondent would become moody without justification” and “would often ignore the petitioner… about two days every week”.

The judge, Mr Justice Moor, said it was “impossible” for all 28 “to have behaved in exactly the same way”. He said a director for iDivorces, which drafted the petitions, “apologised profusely”.
Metro (Jenny Woodhouse)

Tea for two

A mysterious abandoned afternoon tea has been found in the middle of Lake District woodland. Photographer Ashley Cooper said when he first found the table and chairs he thought it was an art installation. But on closer inspection he thought the half-eaten food was abandoned by a couple.

Cooper said that the table, above the Blea Tarn, was probably left “by someone from the Instagram generation”.
BBC North East and Cumbria (Janet Mansfield)

Taken for a ride

A bike lane that is only 10ft long and takes two seconds to ride has left cyclists in a spin.

The tiny stretch in Stapleford, Nottinghamshire, was installed by the county council to encourage green transport but has been labelled “pointless” and a “crazy waste of taxpayers’ cash”.
Metro (Amanda Welles)

[See also: This England: Petrol Heads]

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This article appears in the 20 Oct 2021 issue of the New Statesman, Twilight of the West