If you keep throwing punches, you're bound to hit something

"A tragic individual who should get out more." Martin Salter, Fishing Consultant

"A man who's (sic) only contribution to public life in Reading is to publish a scandal mongering website." David Sutton, Local Librarian

"A self-righteous little prick" An RBC Employee

Message in a Bottle Bank

Bottle Bank

After it was revealed that local Tories had vetoed plans to site a new bottle bank in Peppard, local councillor Mark Ralph was forced to give his reasons: "I am quite dismayed by David Cameron turning his back on the idea that selection does not work and we can guarantee that your local Tory councillors are quite prepared to make a principled stand on such an important local matter. Unless the Council bring in separate facilities for recycling Dom Pérignon and Beaujolais Nouveau bottles, we will oppose any new bottle banks in Peppard. I can't see how our constituents can be expected to share their bottle banks with Caversham scum from the Amersham Road estate and their reassuringly chav like Chardonnay bottles. Where will it end? Stella Artois bottles recycled into Veuve Clicquot magnums? It's no coincidence that Caversham is an anagram of Chav-mares."

Freedom of MPs Act

Martin Salter

Martin Salter has angered Reading Borough Council officials by issuing a formal complaint against them for the disclosure of information under the Data Protection Act in an attempt to stem the growing ridicule his support of the restriction of access to MPs' correspondance has attracted.

"How dare they release anything without my authority," he complained. "There are clearly designed procedures to prevent this abuse of the law. The Council must always ring me first to check that I'm happy with every word they publish and quite clearly on this occassion they have failed in their duty to protect their local MP. My letter of complaint to the Information Commissioner is, of course, private correspondance between myself and him, which is why I have asked my secretary to copy it to every possible media outlet I can think of."

Council Spokeman Oscar Mortali refused to comment on the complaint: "We haven't cleared our response with Mr. Salter yet, but we'll get back to you as soon as we have."

The Reading West MP has also rounded on Liberal Parliamentary candidate Gareth Epps for 'jumping on the media bandwagon'. "Mr. Epps is clearly an amateur at this game and I suggest that he takes a tip from the expert when it comes to jumping on bandwagons - ME. He should start practicing on skateboards first. Once he's mastered them he could try supermarket trolleys with wobbly wheels and only then should he dare follow me on to the full size media bandwagon."

West Side Story

Tilehurst Gangs
Anti-Social Behaviour

Large areas of West Reading are to be covered by a new dispersal order under the Anti-Social Behaviour Act 2003. Areas including Tilehurst, Norcot, Southcote and Battle are due to be served with the order which will allow the police and police community support officers to ask young people to go to Whitley if they want to carry on causing trouble.

Tony Page, Lead Councillor for Community Regeneration, said: "This is a great step forward in grabbing headlines for an initiative which will con the people of Reading into thinking we're tackling the problem of youth crime, when in fact there will be no more police on the street to enforce it and our community support officers have no powers of arrest anyway."

Silver Street Lining

Silver Street

Reading Borough Council have taken out an injunction against the anti-capitalist squatters who have taken over and transformed the derelict land behind the former Womens' Information Centre in Silver Street into a 'Community Garden'.

Council Spokesman Chris Branighan said: "How dare they clean up the used condoms and hypodermic syringes and turn it into a nice usable green space? Until we have carried out a full risk assessment and issued the appropriate Health and Safety certificates these squatters are behaving in a totally irresponsible manner. At least when it was derelict and unusable any child injured here was trespassing and not due a penny in compensation, but now it's been cleaned up and looking nice people might expect the Council to keep it that way. Won't somebody think of the children?"

"Anyway, we are seeking possession of the premises, and as soon as this has been achieved we will secure the site pending imminent demolition of the existing properties and disposal of the land for more yuppie rabbit hutches, because we know that is what the people of Katesgrove are crying out for, not some pathetic community area."

Lack of Planning

Jo Lovelock

There were sensational scenes at the Wednesday's Planning Committee meeting when Councillor Jo Lovelock stood up to read a prepared statement about former Councillor Azam Janjua.

"I am aware of this man's totally unacceptable behaviour towards women. Martin Salter told me all about it so it must be true," she told a hushed gallery. "In this town the only people allowed to harrass women are Labour Party members, just ask Jane Griffiths. And whilst Mr. Janjua was a member of the Labour party I was happy to keep quiet, but now he's a Tory I want everyone to know what a despicable man he is."

Her husband, fellow councillor Peter Ruhemann also got up and left, telling the gallery: "Sorry, I have to go as well or I'm sleeping on the couch tonight. You know what she's like when she gets in one of these moods."

The new Tory boy responded to the accusations: "I've no idea where that silly bitch got the idea that I behave unacceptably towards women."

Robots in Disguise

Professor Warwick
Prof. Warwick and Close Friends

‘Robo prof’ Kevin Warwick says he’d be prepared to insert tracker microchips into Reading Borough Councillors if there is enough public support.

Amid growing public concern about Councillors who are elected and then just disappear, the University of Reading cybernetics expert has been bombarded with hundreds of requests from residents for Big Brother-style ID microchips to keep track of the elusive politicians.

Prof Warwick, said: "We're all sick of it. They knock on your door at election time, but when you want a parking scheme or your bin collections sorted, it's like 'call me when I get off the plane'. I'll show the lazy so-and-sos."

As well as tracking movements, the chips will detect whether Councillors are snoozing during committee meetings or having a lie-in when they should be going to residents surgeries, and deliver a small electric shock.

Blow Up Reporter

John Howarth
IDRologist Video [Replay]

Reading Evening Post Reporter John Howarth sensationally 'lost it' during an interview where he attempted to expose The Church of IDRology. During an interview with Howard Thomas, a chief IDRologist of Thetan level, Mr. Howarth repeatedly called him a dangerous cult (or at least our reporter thinks he said 'cult').

The tomato faced reporter carried on ranting: "You were not there. You did not see the other plans because we didn't let you see them. You were not there."

The former Reading councillor is hoping to expand his media horizons. As well as starting a new career as a reporter, he is planning to appear soon on Channel 4's 'Non-entity Wife Swap'.

Adventure Playground Success

Katesgrove School
New Adventure Playground Opened

Reading's education chiefs are hailing the success of the new adventure playgound at Katesgrove School. Rubbishing reports on the BBC's web site that it was a health hazard and responsible for injuries to pupils, the Council have instead insisted that plans are afoot to roll out the controversial project to other schools with Whitley being given top priority.

Adrian Smith head of Planning and Projects in the Education department said: "This superb new education facility will stand the children of Katesgrove in good stead for surviving on the streets. The broken ground, smashed glass, used condoms and hypodermic needles provide valuable life skills which are necessary for life in Reading. And if they don't like it, we can always flog it off to a developer."

Unusually, no Lead Councillor could be found to make a fatuous remark for the record.

Town Sold for a Pound

Tricia Haines
Rubber Stamping the Deal

Reading Borough Council has been swift to act after Communities Secretary Ruth Kelly announced that councils could sell off public assets on the cheap. Reading Chief Executive Tricia Haines has announced a ground breaking deal to sell Reading lock, stock and barrel to the people who designed the one way IDR, Peter Brett Associates for £1.

"Why not? For years they've been sending us their 'crazy' ideas which has saved the Council a hell of a lot of time and effort trying to screw things up ourselves. They own most of the town already: Thames Valley Park, Green Park, Kennet Valley Park. Junction 11, Reading City Transport 2020 and the One Way IDR are all their work so we're confident that we've done the right thing," she told us. "Irate drivers late for work after being stopped by PBA 'researchers' will already know that they have the Police working for them. We've been rubber stamping their schemes for years, so I can't see any change to most citizens. And with Labour expected to lose power next year, something had to be done to protect PBA profits from the vagaries of the ballot box."

Transport of Delight

Tom Crisp

Reading Borough Council's Cabinet have voted for 26 year old Tom Crisp to take over as Lead Councillor for Transport Strategy despite admitting that he rarely drives around Reading as he catches the train to work. "The public really need to understand that we must do something about all the cars in town because they keep getting in the way of my bike. I've already had a few ideas of my own. Think back to the turn of the 20th century when there was very little congestion on our roads. I don't think it's any co-incidence that the abolition of the man walking in front of the car carrying a red flag led to an explosion in traffic. It's something we should seriously investigate reinstating."

Jon Howarth, the former transport supremo who chickened out of standing at the recent elections, said: "As someone who doesn't drive much in town, Tom is well qualified to bugger up the roads. I have every confidence that he'll carry on my good work."