Ambridge matriarch in Fete shocker
Ambridge was shocked to the core this week when a senior village figure appeared to undermine one of the community’s most cherished institutions.
Jill Archer, 87, of Brookfield told fellow committee members she would be late to a meeting ‘because there are some things in life that are more important than the Ambridge Fete.’
‘We were all rendered speechless,’ said Lynda Snell. ‘I can’t imagine how anyone would say such a thing. Especially when Fallon Rogers has come up with an inspired idea to make a Pets’ Talent Show the centrepiece of the Fete. Could there be anything more Ambridge?’
Contacted by the Ambridge Observer, Mrs Archer was unrepentant. ‘I needed to spend time with my daughter Shula,’ she said. ‘ Everyone knows I am the best mother in Ambridge and I could not have my youngest, Elizabeth, showing me up by being loving and tolerant about my granddaughter’s sexuality. Whatever that may mean.
‘I’ve been working hard all week to undermine my daughter-in-law Ruth in the grandmother department, and here was Shula telling family members that I had failed her. Now, she may have ditched her sacred marriage vows for a silly mid-life whim but I will support her come what may because that is what mums do, Elizabeth says. Would you like some carrot cake?’
Turbulence at Spiritual Home
The future of Spiritual Home, Ambridge’s foremost holistic retreat and spa, hung in the balance this week as its owner Kate Madikane flounced off to sulk on the Kent coast (shurely, took some time out to consider her business options? Ed.)
‘Kate has returned home now, which is such a relief. We haven’t been so worried since she went to Glastonbury and came back with a baby,’ said her mother, Jennifer Aldridge of Home Farm.
‘Of course, that’s not very likely this time as Kate is… well, let’s just say her peak fertility years are behind her. Unlike my son Adam of course. His little swimmers are in absolutely top form, did you know? Anyway… I’m sure Kate will calm down soon. She knows she’d struggle without me to make her blackberry tea and serve her beetroot hummus just the way she likes it!’
Brian Aldridge, who recently announced shock plans to sell off a parcel of land that adjoins Spiritual Home, said he and Ms Madikane had had a ‘difference of opinion’. ‘Kate believes that having tractors rumble past Spiritual Home all day will ruin her business, and I believe that she is a spoiled, over-indulged brat who hasn’t bothered to read the small print on the Home Farm partnership document,’ he said.
The Ambridge Observer reached out to Ms Madikane for comment, but unfortunately the statement she released was not appropriate for a family newspaper.
All bets off on Pip’s baby date
Bookmakers have suspended betting on the birth date of Pip Archer’s baby, after punters piled into Sunday June 17. ‘We had some money come in for Saturday June 16, which is her mum Ruth’s 50th birthday,’ said Lou Sittall of Borchester Turf Accountants. ‘But Sunday is not only the day of Ruth’s birthday party, but Fathers' Day. Studying the form, we reckon that Archer babies often arrive to cause maximum disruption and inconvenience. So we reckon a touching birth scene in the marquee at Home Farm is a no-brainer.’
Before the book was closed, decent odds were available on Tuesday June 19 (Fallon Rogers’s birthday) and Friday June 22 (Adam Macy and Chris Carter’s birthday). ‘We even had a few brave souls who reckoned Pip could hold out until the Ambridge Fete,’ said Mr Sittall. ‘But you could get 100-1 on that as Lynda Snell would never stand for it.’
Bets are still being taken on the baby's name. 'On the basis that parents often take inspiration from their surroundings, our favourite is Floral Pedestal Archer if it's a girl, or Jazz Quintet Archer for a boy,' said Mr Sittall.
From the message boards
As Ambridge’s youngsters celebrate the end of their exams, we drop in on the AmTeens forum to see what’s got the online community buzzing:
• Hey guys!!!! No more exams EVA!!!! Who’s gonna hang at the Black Dragon for some cocktails and to watch me burn my pencil case? DJFreddEE
• Why Freddie boy, are you gonna smoke it? You and me got unfinished business, remember? I’m a couple of men down in my operation and I need you to shift some supplies, get me? ChemicalEllis
• Go away Ellis. I’m picking fruit at Home Farm all summer and then I’m off to South Africa. And anyway, you’ll get what’s coming to you. DJFreddieEE
• Sure, Freddie boy. What you gonna do, get your big butch sister Lily to rough me up? We all know about her and that Meredith girl, whoever she is. ChemicalEllis
• Guys, guys, take it outside, will you? You need to check out this week’s Borchester Echo, featuring yours truly as Bachelor of the Month! TractorBoyJosh
• Wow, cool! Bet you’ll get some hot dates out of that! DJFreddEE
• Too right, Fred. I’ve got three sales appointments this week already. And a sniff of a nearly-new baler in Penny Hassett. Anyone on here interested? TractorBoyJosh
• Shut UP, Josh! Everyone.
Pet of the Week (not a pet, a working animal. This is a farming paper, you know. Ed.)
Name: Peppa Pig (yes, it’s stupid, but we can’t change it because of Poppy, bless the poor little mite)
Owner: Ed Grundy, Grange Farm
Likes: eating, pushing small girls into puddles
Dislikes: being prodded by judges at Borchester Show
Do say: ‘Ain’t he handsome? Think how much more he’ll be worth when he’s bigger!’
Don’t say: ‘You turned down £4,000 for him? Are you mad? With the luck of the Grundys, do you really think he’ll make it to his first birthday?’