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3 November 2021

This England: Thirsty foxes

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

Thirty people on the same street were stunned to discover that thirsty foxes had chewed through the brake cables of their cars. The damage to the vehicles on Spencer’s Road in Horsham, West Sussex, cost £60,000 in total.

The foxes like to drink brake fluid, which contains diethylene glycol, a sweet-tasting alcohol, experts said.

Sunday Post (Ron Grant)

A spanner in the works

Britain’s oldest engineer has retired after 75 years with Vauxhall – and was given a spanner as a leaving gift.

Bryan Webb, 90, started work in Gloucester in 1946. “I love to keep busy,” he said.

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Metro (Amanda Welles)

Under no illusion

Tesco and Sainsbury’s have been mocked for hiding shelf shortages with cardboard cut-outs. Empty fruit and veg crates were spotted covered with convincing pictures of missing items.

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Sharon Dale tweeted a picture from her local Sainsbury’s, where pasta boxes were replaced with dull orange cartoon shapes. She wrote: “Sainsbury’s aren’t even trying to make it look genuine.”

Mark Ireson (Daily Star)


A Boris Johnson scarecrow made to boost the morale of people in Stowmarket during the lockdowns has gone missing. Sharon Kulesa, who made the scarecrow, said: “I had plans to put all kinds of costumes on him for the rest of the year. It is all a bit rubbish.”

East Anglian Daily Times (Terry Hanstock)

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This article appears in the 03 Nov 2021 issue of the New Statesman, Britannia Chained