What do we think about Banksy’s Dismaland theme park in Western-Super-Mare’s Tropicana.? So edgy is it that before the great unwashed were allowed inside, there was a private party for stars and the rich who collect his work. Jack Black was there. Glastonbury Festival adminstrator Emily Eavis was there. Actor Nicholas Hoult was there.
You see. Edgy.
The brochure invites paying visitors (using actual coin of the realm and not Mickey Mouse money):
Are you looking for an alternative to the soulless sugar-coated banality of the average family day out?
Well keep looking, Average Family. Stay in the rain-mortared car and have a row.
Or just somewhere cheaper. Then this is the place for you—a chaotic new world where you can escape from mindless escapism. Instead of a burger stall, we have a museum. In place of a gift shop we have a library, well, we have a gift shop as well.
Bring the whole family to come and enjoy the latest addition to our chronic leisure surplus—a bemusement park. A theme park who’s big theme is: theme parks should have bigger themes…
They do. Banksy assures use that the big theme at Disney is globalism, free markets, capitalism, cheap travel, cheap protein and feminism- the princesses are always the stars. Disney also liked atomic bombs. How’s that for edgy? Walt sees your dystopian wasteland, Banksy, and raises you millions dead and nothingness.
This event contains adult themes, distressing imagery, extended use of strobe lighting, smoke effects and swearing. The following items are strictly prohibited: knives, spraycans, illegal drugs, and lawyers from the Walt Disney corporation.
Probably because soulless lawyers for Walt Disney’s would find this vision of Hell a welcome escape from the contents of the evil in their own heads.
It’s the authentic face of anti-consumerism as the London Dungeon is the authentic face of torture.
In addition to art you’ll also find functional a terrifying carousel, a mini golf park, a ferris wheel, and some ludicrously impossible fair games (like ‘topple the anvil with a ping pong ball’ by David Shrigley), roving occupy protests, and a Star Wars stormtrooper who sulks around the exhibition in a state of complete misery. The park is staffed by morose Dismaland employees who are uninterested in being helpful or remotely informative. Entrance to the event requires an uncomfortably awkward NSA-esque security screening, and of course you get to exit through the gift shop.Entrance to the event requires an uncomfortably awkward NSA-esque security screening, and of course you get to exit through the gift shop.
Banksy has made a deathly Disneyland to mock our crass consumer tastes and the ease with which we can be distracted from important issues (like the MIGRANT CRISIS) by a few crumbs of crap leisure. As one of the numerous ecstatic media reviewers said — favourably — Dismaland is a reminder that ‘our fellow humans are a sham’…
Banksy is wildly successful because he regurgitates in sixth-former-style cynicism the prejudices of the chattering class: their agitation with the blob; their loathing for the little people’s material desires; their hatred of the super-rich; their concern for nature and its beasts if evil mankind doesn’t halt his destructive ways. A searing critic of capitalism? Please. Banksy is modern capitalism’s loss of faith in itself made flesh.
Waldemar Januszczak finds it “entertaining“:
The first thing you see when you walk in is a battered old television set on which the Disney film is about to come to an end. Cinderella has been to the ball. She has met her prince. He has tracked her down with the glass slipper. They are about to live happily ever after.
‘Entry-level anarchism’ in action
But wait. What is that light flashing on and off in the darkness beyond? Oh no. There has been a terrible accident. Cinderella’s coach has crashed, and some life-sized police have turned up to investigate. There is a body hanging out of the door. It is Cinderella. And is it just me, or does she not suddenly look a bit like Lady Di?
Using the language and methods popularised in theme parks, Banksy has built a full-scale alternative to Disneyland in which every ride, game and exhibit sets out to question not just the purpose of theme parks but also the crumbling, grotty state of modern Britain.
Works by 58 handpicked artists including Damien Hirst and Jenny Holzer have been installed across the 2.5-acre site. Julie Burchill has rewritten Punch & Judy to give it a Jimmy Savile spin. Jimmy Cauty, once part of the KLF, is displaying his version of a fun model village complete with 3,000 riot police in the aftermath of major civil unrest.
In one tent would-be anarchists can find out how to unlock the Adshel posters seen at bus stops. For £5 people can buy the tools to break into them, replacing the official posters with any propaganda they please. Is it legal? “It’s not illegal,” said the vendor…
Across the way is a “pocket money loans” shop offering money to children at an interest rate of 5,000%. In front of its counter is a small trampet so children can bounce up to read the outrageous small print drawn up by artist Darren Cullen.
Cullen said he had met so many people taking out payday loans who were well aware of how ridiculous the payback was. “As the welfare state is retreating the market is filling the gap in a really predatory way. People are being saddled with insane amount of debt for years.”
Like other artists involved, he has never met Banksy, but he was delighted to be part of the show.
“This place is brilliant. I only knew the minimum amount before I got here,” he said, “but it is so cool. It is just amazing having this much sarcasm in one place.”
And for £3 – the price of a ride on a fairground Dodgem – for teenagers bored with everything it’s worth a visit. Mums and dads, aka ‘the idiots’, it might be a tad dull.
In 1987, Maggie Thatcher was well into her second term as British Prime Minister. With an election looming – which she won – Thatcher thought it a good idea to appear on the BBC’s Saturday morning show Saturday Superstore.
Dressed in uniform ‘hearing-aide beige’, Maggie would seduce the mums and dads to her cause and turn the kids on to politics. She tooks calls. One caller, an Alison Standfast, asked her, “Where will you be if nuclear war breaks out?” Maggie said she’d be in London, possibly stood amidst the ruins in a blackened concrete hellscape. It’d be awful but at least she could finally empathise with the miners.
Incidentally, Maggie wasn’t the most right-wing personality on show. That honour goes to presenter Mike Read, the BBC Radio DJ who released this record in praise of UKIP (remember them?). For resons unclear, Read sang his tune in a West Indian accent, like Max Bygraves.
3rd July 1973: Adoring fans reaching out to touch the hand of the English pop star, David Bowie, during the concert at the Hammersmith Odeon where Bowie announced that he was retiring his alter-ego ‘Ziggy Stardust’. (Photo by Steve Wood/Express/Getty Images)
Will Brooker, a professor at Kingston University in London, has a new experiment: he will live as David Bowie for a year. He will do some “method acting” as Ziggy Stardust, dress up in the garb of Bowie’s various other incarnations (Bowie, of course is the alter ego of the private David Jones), immerse himself in mid-1970s culture to enter Bowie’s mindset, do his best not to confuse and worry Iman, Bowie’s wife, not use her persona to attract groupies, and partake of the singer’s milk and red peppers diet, omitting the cocaine.
To Phoenix, Arizona, where Okilly Dokilly –the world’s first and only Ned Flanders tribute band – are talking to James McCann. They play ‘Nedal’ music. It being what The Simpson’s character would have wanted.
As their Facebook bio notes: “most of our songs are direct Ned quotes.”
Lead Singer Head NedOn How They Got Started
“Myself and our drummer (Bled Ned) were in line at a grocery store, entertaining ourselves by coming up with really cutesy names for really hardcore, brutal bands. The name Okilly Dokilly came up and was very funny to us. We ran with it. I contacted a few friends (Red Ned, Thread Ned and Stead Ned), and here we are. Most of us have played in other bands around our hometown. This is definitely the heaviest sounding project any of us Neds have done.”
“Not as fast as Bartcore, and a little cleaner than Krusty Punk. Not as heavy as ‘Homer J.ent’ – Nedal is a happy medium in the Simpscene.”
Are You All Left Handed?
“I am,”says Head Ned. “The other Neds aren’t so lucky. It made writing All That Is Left pretty fun,” he continues. “It’s our homage to the Leftorium, and the bridge is entirely left handed puns.”
In reality, this is all just an over-the-top attempt at getting Matt Groening’s autograph, even if it comes on a cease and desist letter.
Is Manchester City’s Raheem Sterling in trouble? The Sun thinks he is. Its headline and teaser place Sterling at a scene of destruction:
Who hit the gas?
EXCLUSIVE: Raheem’s Merc crashed with nitrous cans in footwell, but who was driving?
Sterling’s mashed up Merc found abandoned in London
And, reportedly, there were “laughing gas canisters by the front seat”.
Very soon he learn that the only thing this has to do with the England player who joined Manchester City from Liverpool for £49m, is the car, which is his:
It is believed the Manchester City ace had lent the £125,000 car to a friend, and a worried source warned: “Raheem needs to think about who he hangs around with.”
Why does he? We don’t know what happened to the car. And laughing gas is not a banned substance. And the car was not “abandoned”. It was left by the roadside with damage to the front right wing.
The 155mph Merc was left on a London street after the crash. Its bonnet was crumpled and both airbags had activated, suggesting the impact was at speed.
It also suggests the driver and passenger were wearing seat belts. And according to Safecar.gov:
Frontal air bags are generally designed to deploy in “moderate to severe” frontal or near-frontal crashes, which are defined as crashes that are equivalent to hitting a solid, fixed barrier at 8 to 14 mph or higher. (This would be equivalent to striking a parked car of similar size at about 16 to 28 mph or higher.)
Was the impact at “speed”, as the Sun suggests?
It was taken to Manchester for repair. The car was pictured outside a garage in Middleton, with blue nitrous oxide canisters visible in a front seat footwell.
Anyone asked the mechanic about them?
We hear from an unnamed “source”:
“The Merc was in London for days after the smash — it was just left on the street. Raheem wasn’t in the car at the time, he was training in Manchester. It looks like he lent it to a mate.
“Raheem needs to think about whether he’s hanging around with the right kind of people, especially as he is such a high-profile star.”
The Sun then reminds readers that Sterling has twice been “caught” inhaling what appears to have been laughing gas.
…it has been linked to 17 UK deaths in five years, and doctors warn it can cause problems including blindness.
No direct link to the deaths has been proven. And as for the gas making you go “bald and BLIND”, that ‘fact’ is rooted in the words not of “doctors’, but of would-be media darling Dr David Allamby, clinical director of London’s Focus Clinic (see Press for details!), who told media:
“The links between vitamin B12 deficiency and hippy crack are well established, following a series of research papers. And this B12 deficiency causes damage to the optic nerve, something known as optic neuropathy.
“It could be helped by huge supplement injections of B12, but the vision loss could be irreversible, especially if advanced. And chronic abuse of nitrous oxide gas could not only lead to blindness, but a host of other problems, too, including nerve damage.
“I’d argue that if more and more people in the UK continue to abuse this so-called legal high we could be facing a sight loss epidemic in the months and years to come.”
The risk of going blind exists for a chronic user – defined as being addicted to the drug – and are deficient in vitamin B12.
Looks like elite athlete Raheem Sterling is safe. As for his car, well, he can always toss some of his fortune at making it better.
SHOCKING video plunged England footballer Jamie Vardy into a race row last night after he was seen abusing a fellow gambler, saying: “Yo Jap, walk on.”
Leicester City striker Vardy, 28, can be heard loudly repeating the word “Jap” three times during a heated bust-up as he played a late-night game of poker at a casino.
Leicester City players have been embroiled a summer race row before. Earlier this year a trio of berks were exposed racially abusing Thai prostitutes in a homoerotic orgy.
A witness appears to tell us how bad it is:
“As an England international he should know that eyes are going to be on him when he goes out, but he acted just like a football thug. The club should investigate. I was outraged.”
The Sun then advises its innocent, shocked and confused readers:
The term “Jap’” short for Japanese, has been considered a derogatory racial term since World War II.
But one thing is certain, Vady has destroyed football and the entire season. Oh, he has becasue the ridiculous Kick It Out outfit says he has:
Anti-racism campaign group Kick It Out last night said Vardy’s behaviour had “cast a shadow” over the start of the football season.
Dr Taplin, also a Fellow of the University of Leicester, said, remidns us all that footballers are “role models to young people”.
Helpfully, Sun readers see Tony Parsons as their rol mode. He tells them:
As a man with a Japanese wife, an Anglo-Japanese daughter and a profound love for Japan, I should be deeply offended by Jamie chucking the old “Jap” insult around. But he is clearly so poorly educated he is somewhere beneath contempt.
Certainly the 70th anniversary of nuclear bombs falling on Hiroshima and Nagasaki is not the most sensitive time to revive such archaic racist terms.
Parsons then tells what names are acceptable to level at Vardy:
But screaming “Oi, Jap!” only makes one person look like a tosser, Jamie. And it is not the gentleman you were shrieking at. The Japanese are a proud, well-educated, civilised nation – the kindest and most decent people in the world. They wouldn’t let a thicko like Jamie Vardy clean their toilets.
1971: British statesman and prime minister Edward Heath aboard his yacht Morning Cloud at Gosport, Hampshire, before the Admiral’s Cup race.
WAS former Prime Minister Edward Health a paedophile? Did he rape children? Well, he is dead (the former Tory MP died in 2005) so we can all pile in with an opinion. Who needs facts, proof or to navigate any bariers to jusice when you have the police and media so keen to give the corpse a kicking?
Wiltshire police wants you call in if you ever met ‘Ted':
“Sir Edward Heath has been named in relation to offences concerning children. He lived in Salisbury for many years and we would like to hear from anyone who has any relevant information that may assist us in our enquiries or anyone who believes they may have been a victim.”
Believe they have been a victim? Tell the police and they will investigate the contents of your thoughts. And you will be beleived. For instance, LBC news announces that Ted is guilty:
“Ted Heath Child Sex Victims Appeal By NSPCC”
LBC looks at the hard facts:
“Sir Edward, who was prime minister from 1970 to 1974, never married and there has been speculation about his personal life over the years.”
Never married, eh? If you want proof that man is good with kids, look at his ring finger; spot a band on it and know you’re in the presence of a trusted sort, a regular Fred West.
The BBC has a list of investigations in which Heath figures:
Operation Midland: The BBC understands Sir Edward is being looked at as part of the operation examining claims that boys were abused by a group of powerful men at locations across southern England and in London in the 1970s and 1980s. It has focused on the Dolphin Square estate in Pimlico, south-west London.
Operation Whistle: The States of Jersey Police has confirmed Sir Edward forms part of its investigation into historical allegations of abuse. It says some of the allegations relate to abuse “within institutions or by people of public prominence”.
Operation Hydrant: A nationally co-ordinated exercise to collate all allegations of historical abuse involving high profile-figures. The operation has been notified of Sir Edward being named in connection with an allegation of sexual assault in the 1960s.
Is that all – just the three big investigations?
British Conservative Party politician and amateur musician Edward Heath (1916 – 2005) conducting, circa 1965. (Photo by Erich Auerbach/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
How many police and raking over the muck? The BBC, again:
Five police forces are investigating claims of historical child sexual abuse involving former PM Sir Edward Heath. The Met, Wiltshire, Kent, Jersey and Hampshire forces are conducting separate inquiries into the late MP.
A mere five police forces are on it! Why so many? Are they all going to point the finger at each other?
Tom Watson MP: “I have referred two allegations regarding Edward Heath to the police”
Can’t Watson just show us some proof? Name and shame! Publish and be damned! Can a Watson nudge, wink and puff of the chest be enough to damn the dead?
The Sir Edward Heath Charitable Foundation, which operates the museum at Arundells, his home in Salisbury, said it welcomed the investigation. “We wholeheartedly believe [it] will clear Sir Edward’s name and we will co-operate fully with the police in their enquiries,” a spokesman said.
Can his name ever be cleared once it is sullied by the shout of “paedo!”?
British Conservative politician, Edward Heath (1916 – 2005) signs autographs after the ceremony for the renaming of Lympne Airport to Ashford Airport, Ashford, Kent, England, 10th June 1969. (Photo by Stanley Sherman/Daily Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
The Mirror finds a finger pointer. The man was aged 12 when he claims he met Heath:
In a letter to his solicitor, in which he tells how he was picked up in car, saying: “I think it was about August 1961 when I ran away again….I decided to hitch a lift.
“I stuck my thumb out as I walked….when a car pull up and the window was lowered and the driver asked me where I was going. I told him the West End (of London) and he told me to get in the car.”
During the journey he started a conversation with a man who he later identified as Heath.
Describing the event, he says: “He was asking me why I was on my own and I told him I wanted to have time on my own and that I came to London on my own a lot and my mum wasn’t worried. He asked me if I had somewhere to stay to which I replied in the negative. He said if I wanted to I could stay at his place for the night.
“I was grateful and accepted but knew that he hadn’t asked out of generosity and that I would have to pay, probably with my body but it didn’t bother me, as I had been using my body for over five years now and it was almost second nature.”
Was it boaty muso Ted?
“I went into the living room where I had a cup of tea and a sandwich he had made. I noticed photos of yachts on the wall but one thing that intrigued me was a silver stick in an open box on a sideboard.
“I asked him what it was and he told me it was a conductor’s baton. It made him laugh when I said I had never seen a bus conductor with a baton. He explained it was an orchestra’s conductor’s baton.”
The location he claims was picked up, along the A2 road in north Kent, is believed to be less than two miles away from where the Tory politician was allegedly warned by police in the 1950s to cease cruising for gay sex.
Back at the flat:
“We spent the night masturbating each other…..I don’t know what time we eventually slept”.. .He continues in the note: “I woke the next morning….I got up and got dressed and went into the living room. There was a sandwich on the table….he said he had a morning appointment and that it was time to leave….he let me out the front door and told me the way to the West End.”
He goes on to detail how in 1965, when the man was 15-years-old, he saw a picture alongside a newspaper article with Heath standing next to Margaret Thatcher.
Addressing the female Tory PM by her maiden name Roberts, he writes: “In the picture was Margaret Roberts (who became Margaret Thatcher), Edward Heath…..and a lady (somthing) (I think Smith).
“I realised at once that the man in the photo was the man who had given me the lift and had sex with me in an apartment in Park Lane…”
Did he tell?
“I learned that he was MP for Bexley. This answered a lot of questions as to why no-one believed me about the London saga. I got called a liar and a fantasist.”
British Prime Minister Edward Heath (1916 – 2005, centre) meets English actor and comedian Frankie Howerd (1917 – 1992) at a Variety Club of Great Britain Christmas luncheon at the Dorchester Hotel, London, 7th December 1970. (Photo by Keystone/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)
The Independent Police Complaints Commission will consider whether Wiltshire Police failed to properly investigate child sex abuse claims against Sir Edward Heath. A retired senior officer claims that a woman accused of running a brothel should have been prosecuted in the 1990s.
He claims that when the suspect alleged that Sir Edward was involved in child sex offences, and she planned to expose him, officers then dropped the case against her. As well as investigating this allegation, the IPCC will look into whether the claims about Sir Edward were ever looked at by the Wiltshire force.
Meet the madam:
Myra Forde, 67, said on Wednesday she had no knowledge of any misconduct by Heath, and denied threatening to expose him to escape prosecution in the 1990s. A prosecution against Forde was dropped in 1992.
In a statement issued to the Salisbury Journal, Richard Griffiths, a solicitor who acted for Forde, said: “My former client wishes me to make it very clear that at no stage did she state that Ted Heath was a client and at no stage did she threaten to expose him as a client of hers if the prosecution was continued.”
He added: “For the avoidance of any doubt Myra Forde wishes me to make it clear that she had no involvement with Ted Heath of any kind and has no knowledge of any misconduct on his part.” He said the 1992 trial did not proceed because of difficulties with a witness.
Forde was later jailed twice for operating a brothel in Salisbury.
Is Forde a trusted source?
Forde, who was originally from the Philippines, trained runaway children as sex workers from her property in Salisbury, less than a mile from Heath’s house. One 13-year-old girl would go straight from school to Forde’s brothel, which she called the Oriental Massage Parlour, according to reports of her trial at Winchester crown court.
Following her release from prison, Forde was caught again in December 2009, admitted inciting prostitution, and was sentenced to five years in prison.
The Indy wonders what’s new?
Unsubstantiated – and sometimes wild – allegations against the former prime minister have circulated on the internet for years with some even claiming that Sir Edward pushed for Britain to join the European Common Market because he was being blackmailed over abuse claims.
As we know now, historically the police failed to take this type of allegation seriously and ignored or possibly covered up child abuse claims made against prominent individuals such as Cyril Smith and Jimmy Savile.
That is no longer the case. All such historical allegations are now being forensically examined – even if the evidence is flimsy.
Balls. This is the police navel gazing, offering introspection in place of investigation. It’s not justice. It’s PR.
The FussyPup offers you the chance to buy this St Patrick’s Day Cookie Cutter – a “pot of gold at the end of the rainbow”.
Kimberly Wolfe, one of the proprietors of TheFussyPup, has it pointed out to her that the cookie cutter looks like a knob:
“One pointed out its resemblance to the male organ. We had a little giggle and dismissed the thought. While making adult theme cookie cutters isn’t our main goal, we are happy to provide cookie cutters for any occasion—and we love to see the creativity of our customers! Now if only someone would send me a picture of the results!”
Was she in good health? Last December she gave an interview:
“I am falling apart. My hand is falling apart. I can’t shake hands. I had arthritis and I had an operation for it. I had it done because I was in pain. I am not in pain at the moment. But it looks a bit deformed on the wrist. That has been fixed but it is going to take some time to heal. I fell in the park earlier this year as well and hurt my hand…
“You see on Britain’s Got Talent and The X Factor they all wear ear plugs. But I could not hear myself when I wore them. So that is where the strong voice came from. Now I am totally deaf because of the Cavern days.”
Cilla Black’s son found star’s body after smashing his way into her bedroom
Cilla Black’s doting son Bobby discovered the star’s body after smashing his way into her bedroom when she failed to rise from an afternoon siesta.
We hear from a “source close to the inquiry”:
“Cilla’s son found her lying face upwards in a solarium-style sun terrace next to her bedroom. There’s no conclusive autopsy results yet but the main theory right now is that she had a dizzy turn after going from an air-conditioned room into the midday heat and losing her balance.
“The marks she’s got are consistent with a fall where she’s put up an arm as a defence mechanism.
“What’s need to be determined now is why she fell and whether it was indeed to do with the sudden change in temperature and the effect that had on her – which seems the most likely scenario at the moment – or whether something else triggered the collapse.
“Midday temperatures on Saturday in the area were in the high eighties and we know Cilla wasn’t in the best of health.
“More tests may be necessary after the autopsy to get to the bottom of whats really happened. There’s no evidence to link Cilla’s death to any criminal act but police and courts generally like to keep an open mind on things.“
That speculation from a trusty source who cannot be named becomes fact in the Standard:
Cilla Black died after fall from dizzy turn in searing Costa del Sol heat
Investigation source: “main theory right now is that she had a dizzy turn after going from an air-conditioned room into the midday heat and losing her balance.”
…sources close to the investigation said this yesterday morning medical examiners will look closely at marks on her right arm and elbow which they believe may be linked to a fall potentially caused by a sudden temperature change.
We are then told:
Cilla, born Priscilla Maria Veronica White in 1943 in Liverpool, told last year how she would like to die at 75 before she became too frail to enjoy life.
She said: “Seventy-five is a good age to go. I know it’s only four years away but I take each day as I find it.”
No exactly a suicide case, then. Indeed, Cilla said in 2014:
“I agree with Dignitas, but I couldn’t be the one to administer the poison that kills me. I know I couldn’t commit suicide. I’m too much of a coward, I couldn’t do it. I’d rather somebody make that decision for me.”
But the Daily Star still finds it fire to thunder: “CILLA’S SECRET DEATH WISH”:
All true – apart from the bits about a secret and a death wish.
Giving a defence opening speech, Sarah Elliott QC, representing Black, said she “wholeheartedly” refutes that any abuse took place, adding that the children’s recollections had never been challenged.
She said it was possible the victims’ accounts may have been “influenced” and “encouraged” by others.
“Their carers have accepted what they’ve been told, the social workers have accepted what they’ve been told, the police have accepted what they’ve been told,” Ms Elliott said. “Nobody has challenged them.”
She will be sentenced on September 28.
She did not act alone.
Marie Black, 34, of Norwich, stood trial with nine others, including five women, at Norwich Crown Court.
Michael Rogers, 53, from Romford, Essex, was also found guilty of 14 counts, including cruelty, rape and inciting a child to engage in sexual activity. Jason Adams, 43, from Norwich, was found guilty of 13 similar counts.
Marie Black, Michael Rogers and Jason Adams preyed on children aged under 13
During the three-month trial, the court was told how the ring would hold parties with other adults who would play cards to see who would get to abuse which child, while other forms of abuse included the use of toys such as Barbie dolls…
In interviews with the victims, it was disclosed that the children were forced to have sex with each other and would be abused in front of each other and other adults.
A male victim says:
“There would be parties and they would do some games where the boys were in one room with the men and the girls were in another with the women. The adults would have a card game and the winner would get to choose a boy to start touching their private parts and then hurt them afterwards.”
What about the authorities? Sheila Lock, interim executive director of children’s services at Norfolk County Council, said:
“The victims in this case have shown tremendous courage in speaking out. The needs of the children, who were central to the prosecution case, have always been at the fore of our minds and have been the main focus of all of the agencies involved.
“Our priority continues to be the children in this case who, despite the ordeal they have been through, are now doing well and are safe from harm.”
We first heard of Marie Black in 2012. Christopher Booker told her story in the Telegraph:
In France there were tears of joy when Marie Black and Joe Ollis were reunited with their baby daughter Luna, born in France in February but then seized by Norfolk social workers, to be brought back to England to live in foster care. Although this action had been sanctioned by a British court, a High Court judge ruled in May that the seizure was illegal, because Luna was born in France and was therefore outside UK jurisdiction.
Despite further prevarication by the social workers, they eventually obeyed the judge’s order that the child should be returned to France. Last week, finally, Luna was handed by a French court back to her parents. “At first,” they tell me, “she was quiet and withdrawn after her time in foster care, but now she is alert and cheerful.”
Last year I reported the shocking story of Marie Black and Joe Ollis who escaped to France for the birth of their first child, after learning that Norfolk social workers intended to seize it at birth on the grounds that Marie had previously been in a violent relationship with another man, who was by then out of her life…
At a cottage deep in the French countryside, a baby girl kicks her feet in the air and smiles at her father, Joe, as she is cuddled by her mother, Marie.
Little Luna is home at last — reunited with her parents at the end of an historic legal battle against British social workers which began when Marie became pregnant and moved to France from her home in Norfolk.
Marie Black was a fighter who loved kids.
Marie said this week at their home near Cahors in south-west France: ‘We were so excited. Luna went to sleep that first night back with us as though she had never been away.
‘I lost the chance of breastfeeding her, and we missed her first smile. We blame the English social workers’ But she added: ‘I had lost the chance of breastfeeding her, and we missed her first smile. We blame the English social workers.’
Marie had married young and had five children by her abusive husband before fleeing his violence. At one stage, she lived with her children in a hostel for abused women.
But when this proved difficult, she asked social services for help. They took the children into temporary care, and have refused to return them…
And not forgetting:
The couple’s solicitor, Brendan Fleming, added: ‘I find it amazing that social workers flew to a country outside their jurisdiction and brought this baby to Britain at a cost of thousands of pounds of public money.’
Social workers are under immense pressure not to make a mistake following the Baby P case in London in 2007. He died after suffering many injuries despite being seen by Haringey social services and NHS doctors.
Allegations were first reported to police in 2010 but it was in December 2012, when further evidence was disclosed, that police decided they had sufficient evidence to progress the criminal investigation and eventually make the initial arrests in 2013.
The Sun’s photo of Her Majesty the Queen giving Nazi salute in 1933 is a scoop. “Their Royal Heilnesses,” puns the Sun.
Queen Elizabeth 2 was just seven years of age when her Nazi-loving anti-Semitic uncle, the future King George VI, encouraged her to give the stiff-armed salute at Balmoral.
The Queen,’s younger sister, Princess Margaret, is equally blameless as she too salutes the Nazis.
But what of heir mother Queen Elizabeth?
The Telegraph, says “sources close to the Queen” described the photos as “misleading and dishonest”:
The Royal Household was particularly angry at the newspaper’s decision to print the 82-year-old images, which have never been seen before, just three weeks after the Queen and the Duke of Edinburgh visited the site of the former Nazi concentration camp at Bergen-Belsen in Germany.
It takes a special kind of fool to believe the Queen in some way approves of the murder of 6 million Jews. Her Majesty has been a friend to Jews throughout her reign. Jews sings the national anthem with gusto at synagogue services. The Queen is just about the best thing ever to happen to the Royal Family. Three cheers for her!
Others, what we call ‘the sane, might wonder at the world in which Elizabeth was raised. In 1933, her mother would have been 32 or 33 years of age. In 1933, Germany had already begin to ostracise and criminalise Jews.
What was the dear old Queen Mum thinking?
The Buckingham Palace spokesman has reacted:
“It is disappointing that a film, shot eight decades ago and apparently from HM’s personal family archive, has been obtained and exploited in this manner.”
Why? We’re not disappointed. It is a terrific story. The only pity is that it took so long to surface.
The Telegraph makes a suggestion:
In a leading article, the Sun accepts that Hitler, newly installed as Germany’s Chancellor, was “a faintly comic character” at the time, but argues that the involvement of the future Edward VIII, a known Nazi sympathiser, makes the film historically significant.
It does. Even without him it would be newsworthy. Edward’s presences makes it sinister.
Edward, who feared a communist revolution following the murder of Russia’s royal family, courted Hitler when he met him three years after the film was shot.
Not only him. The Sun says the aristocracy feared the communists. Well, some of them did. People involved in the Anglo-German Fellowship, which in 1939 welcomed Gertrud Scholtz-Klink – Hitler’s “perfect Nazi woman” – to teach them the ways of Nazism did.
The Anglo-German Fellowship, of which Prunella Stack’s husband Lord David Douglas-Hamilton and brother-in-law Douglas Douglas-Hamiton MP were both members, was an upper-class and it would be fair to say a predominately right-wing organisation. In fact many of the fellowship were almost unashamedly pro-Nazi and anti-semite.
In 1931 Miss Pamela Bowes-Lyon – cousin of the Duchess of York and future Queen Consort to King George VI and Queen Mother – married Lord Malcolm Douglas-Hamilton in Beaulieu, Hampshire.
You can read all about how close Britain came to being ruled of fascists on Flashbak.
A royal source is quoted:
“Most people will see these pictures in their proper context and time. This is a family playing and momentarily referencing a gesture many would have seen from contemporary news reels. If you watch the film it is people laughing and joking around and playing, and it was one of the things of the day. No one at that time had any sense how it would evolve. To imply anything else is misleading and dishonest. The Queen is around six years of age at the time and entirely innocent of attaching any meaning to these gestures.”
It was unclear on Friday night how The Sun had obtained the footage, which it argued was part of a “hidden” archive of material relating to the Royal family which it said should now be released.
Over in the Sun, we learn more:
…the pictures must be seen in the context of 1933.
Elizabeth and Margaret are kids. Families of all kinds larked around apeing the stiff-armed antics of the faintly comic character with the Charlie Chaplin moustache who won power in Germany.
No one knew then what Adolf Hitler was capable of. Or that, deep in Bavaria, he was already opening his first concentration camp at Dachau.
What gives The Sun’s extraordinary images such historical significance, and the reason we believe the public has a right finally to see them, is the involvement of the Queen’s uncle Edward.
The man who briefly became our King was already a fan of Hitler — and remained so as late as 1970, long after the Holocaust’s horrors were laid bare…
Edward and a clique of anti-Semitic aristocrats were terrified of a communist revolution stripping them of power and privilege with deadly force, as it had in Russia. Fascism seemed like an answer.
But even the Sun has its limits:
His desire to appease Germany stands now in stark contrast to the courage and patriotism of the Queen Mum once Luftwaffe bombs fell. She was so inspiring to Londoners in the Blitz even the Fuhrer considered her a thorn in his side.
The Sun produces a feature entitled “Queen of the Blitz Silly salute, but a rock in country’s bleak year”.
If there was one woman determined not to let Hitler win it was the Queen Mother.
There were far more people than one woman who wanted to smash the German war machine.
It was Elizabeth who persuaded her husband King George VI that they should remain in Buckingham Palace as the Luftwaffe bombed the capital night after night in 1940.
The stories are hymned. The tales of the bad Royals bits less so.
…there is the tragic saga of the Queen Mother’s nieces, Nerissa and Katherine Bowes Lyon, both born mentally deficient and unable to speak.
They were confined in the Royal Earlswood Mental Hospital at Redhill, Surrey, in 1941, where they remained for the rest of their lives.
Although the Queen Mother knew the statement in Burke’s Peerage that both women were dead (published after false information had been supplied by their mother) was untrue, she never visited either of them, and apparently saw no contradiction in her patronage of Mencap, which campaigns against families placing their mentally challenged relations in state care.
…not long before the announcement of the engagement of the Duke of York to Elizabeth Bowes-Lyon at the beginning of 1923 the papers had carried reports that she was, in fact, to marry his brother, the Prince of Wales (the future Edward VIII). Hence the suggestion, half a century later, by Diana Mosley [née Mitford] that Elizabeth’s enduring antipathy to Wallis was fuelled by jealousy. In a letter to her sister, the Duchess of Devonshire, written soon after the death of the Duke of Windsor in 1972, Diana (Wallis’s friend and future biographer) observed: ‘the theory of their contemporaries that Cake [the Mitford sisters’ nickname for Elizabeth, derived from her sweet tooth and healthy appetite] was rather in love with him (as a girl) & took second best, may account for much.’
Released by Buckingham Palace ahead of the publication this week of the first official biography of the Queen Mother, the letter is her personal account of the events of 13 September 1940 to her “darling” mother-in-law, Queen Mary.
In it she records how she was “battling” to remove an errant eyelash from the King’s eye, when they heard the “unmistakable whirr-whirr of a German plane” and then the “scream of a bomb”.
“It all happened so quickly that we had only time to look foolishly at each other when the scream hurtled past us and exploded with a tremendous crash in the quadrangle,” she wrote.
While her “knees trembled a little bit”, she was “so pleased with the behaviour of our servants”, some of whom were injured as one bomb crashed through a glass roof and another pulverised the palace chapel.
Hours later, after lunching in their air-raid shelter, she and the King were visiting West Ham in London’s East End. She wrote: “I felt as if I was walking in a dead city… all the houses evacuated, and yet through the broken windows one saw all the poor little possessions, photographs, beds, just as they were left.”
Oh, you want the juicy bits, the stuff about the Royal racists, philanderers and scumbags. Well, the Royal want those bits kept secret:
The rest of the Royal archive from that period, of similarly immense interest to historians and the public, is still hidden.
Photo: The “Face on Mars” was one of the most striking and remarkable images taken during the Viking missions to the red planet. Unmistakeably resembling a human face, the image caused many to hypothesize that it was the work of an extraterrestrial civilization. Later images revealed that it was a mundane feature rendered face-like by the angle of the Sun.
Shopping list of the week was penned by Britney Spears. Someone dived into her bins and resurfaced with shopping lists.
Spears, we learn, likes Oreos, pasta, Sprite, gritz, Dr Pepper, flowers, Red Bull, pizzas, cheese, ham, “Boobs” and a “Nose (talk to nose guy)”.
Aside from being an adult human who shops like Yogi Bear, Spears’ shopping for body parts is a curiosity. Does she collects tits and nostrils, aiming to create the ultimate Hollywood museum of add-ons, exhibits to include Jennifer Aniston’s nose tip, Cher’s laughter lines and an introductory talk from the ‘living exhibit’ who bought Michael Jackson’s fire damaged hair.
Or are the words codes for a kind of Hollywood sustenance?
Anyone still too shy to buy a dildo should know that Amazon offers shoppers a free vibrator with pairs of children’s sandals. You just have to select the right brand, which is not all that subtly called PRIMIGI.
Sophie Grantham, 36, didn’t know of the special offer until she took delivery of a pair of said sandals and spotted the five-inch purple Durex vibrator in the box.
Sophie, of Whiteley, Hampshire, explains:
“The parcel was vibrating so the postman made a comment about it maybe being a toothbrush. I was absolutely horrified to find there was this purple vibrator, loose and buzzing about in the shoebox. I don’t know what happened, but it’s not on.”
Karen Danczuk is entertaining Sun readers. In ‘BUSTED’, the estranged wife of vainglorious paedo-hurning MP Simon Danczuk, the Sun reports:
KAREN Danczuk spent more than seven hours with her personal trainer as he stayed the night at her house. Athletic Ben Bate sneaked into the 31-year-old’s marital home late on Thursday — just five days after she split with husband Simon, a Labour MP.
Photos of the man are captioned:
Karen works out in the park with personal trainer Ben Ben outside Karen’s house on Wednesday evening He walks into the house Looking out of the window shortly before midnight Personal trainer leaves in the early hours
Thrilling stuff that any private dick should appreciate.
The pick of the photos, however, is the one labelled:
The horror in Tunisia is getting blanket media coverage. Fifteen British citizens are known to have been murdered. In all, 38 people were killed and 36 wounded by the Islamist at the Sousse beach resort.
The Times: “Tunisia relatives’ desperate wait for news”
Not knowing must be terrible.
Ross Naylor has launched a social media appeal for news of his father Scott Chalkley, 42, and his partner Sue Davey, both of whom were staying at the Imperial hotel which was caught up in the attack in the popualr resourt of Sousse. He said he has not heard any news on their whereabouts despite several calls to their mobile phones, the hotel, the Foreign Office and a local hospital.
The Times quotes Foreign Minister Tobias Ellwood:
“This is the most significant terrorist attack on British people since 7/7 and highlights the ongoing threat of Isil [Isis].”
It looks like relying on the Kurds to keep the barbarians at bay is not going to work.
Victim: Photographer and beauty blogger Carly Lovett, 24, had recently got engaged to her boyfriend Liam Moore, according to the Lincolnshire Echo.
Daily Mail: “Kalashnikov in hand, chilling images show ISIS murderer walking on beach in front of stunned onlookers before unleashing carnage”
It’s Seder Night, when Jews recall Passover and the plagues sent down on the house of Egypt to help along their emancipation from slavery. As dad reads out the story, the cool kids can play along by wearing one of 10 masks, each one representing a plague. “Bagsy, Death to the ‘First Born’,” says Junior, the rascal. Others can enjoy ‘Blood’, ‘Boils’, ‘Lice’ and ‘Darkness’.
The whole set is yours for a mere $14.99 at Bed Bath and Beyond.
But be warned: these mask are only suitable for over 3s lest there be a new plague of ‘Choking’.