Sunday, 12 June 2016

A narrow escape for the village and a secret escape for Lilian: a triumphant week in Ambridge

Ambridge ecstatic at ‘best news ever’

There were wild scenes at The Bull this week as Ambridge celebrated ‘the best news that the village has ever had’ with a huge party.
‘I never want another birthday or Christmas present in my life,’ said Mrs Ruth Archer of Brookfield. ‘But don’t tell David that! Look, there he is on the table, making a speech about our fears that the village would lose its magic. That’s how much this means to us.’
‘It was such a relief to hear the news,’ said Kenton Archer, landlord of The Bull. ‘We’re shifting these celebration cocktails quicker than you can say ‘Boudicca of Borsetshire’.
Mrs Lynda Snell of Ambridge Hall said she was ‘completely humbled’ by the way the village had come together.
‘Of course, Robert and I were upset when we thought we’d have to cancel our open garden day, because the insurance company refused cover,’ she said. ‘But we had no idea the whole of Ambridge would share our pain.’
Bert Fry, who put the finishing touches to his own garden on hold to help fence off the river at Ambridge Hall, said it was the least he could do. ‘We didn’t give up in the flood and we won’t give up now,’ he said.
Mrs Snell said her garden opening would now go ahead as planned.
‘I really regret calling Bert an upstart competitor who was stooping to naked self-promotion and vulgar commercialism,’ she said. ‘And of course I feel sorry for the villages of Edgeley and Loxley Norton, whose open garden days will now be a complete flop.
‘But as Robert always says to me when we’re relaxing on the daybed in the shepherd’s hut: Resurgam, Lyndy!’

• In other news, Borsetshire County Council is this week set to approve a new route for the Borchester-Hollerton relief road. Route C, which will run through Edgeley and Loxley Norton, has been preferred to Route B, which would have run through Ambridge. This will come as no surprise to regular readers. We reported last year that the independent assessment of flood risk, commissioned by the SAVE campaign, plus the discovery of a rare brown hairstreak butterfly, had effectively scuppered Route B. But for some reason The Borchester Echo thought this was big news, so we are giving it a paragraph.   

Noise is a nuisance at Open Farm Sunday

Visitors to Open Farm Sunday at Brookfield have complained that their day out was ruined by a constant droning sound that disrupted the event.
‘We thought life was peaceful down on the farm,’ said one. ’But from the moment we got there the droning started. First there was Adam Macy, boring on about the sat nav on his giant muck-spreader. Then we went to see the Herefords, but couldn’t concentrate because of Pip Archer’s tedious commentary on breeding and pasture and the like.
‘To be honest, it was a welcome diversion when that little flying camera started buzzing overhead. Gave us a chance to get away for a cup of tea and a slice of lemon drizzle, which is what we really come for.’

From the message boards…

What’s got Ambridge residents buzzing online this week? Here’s our pick of the top topics…

• Hey guys, what do we think about the Referendum debate? I think good farmers will thrive outside the EU – we could say goodbye to all that red tape and we’re a strategic industry, so the government won’t leave us high and dry without any subsidies. I’m for Brexit. What about you? HomeFarmAdam

• Yeah, but what about global markets? What about all that Polish and Bulgarian lamb coming over here, taking our shepherd’s pies? What about the three crop rule? Thought you were all for ecofarming, Mr Healthy Soil. It’s a tricky one and no mistake.  Mine’s a pint by the way! PipsDad

• There won’t be any European Union at Grange Farm when Oliver and Caroline Sterling get back from Italy, not when they’ve seen what we’ve done to the place! Piglets, bullocks, the cider club – and as for the crack in the kitchen wall… It’ll be Grexit for us Grundys quick as you like… and where will our Ed and Emma go? Clarrieluv

• Hi everyone, Anya here, remember me? I used to work for Ambridge Organics.. Anyway, Pat Archer’s got in touch and offered me a job at the new Bridge Farm shop. So as soon as I can tear myself away from Koh Samui I’ll be back in Ambridge. I wasn’t quite clear on why Pat needs me though – something about the shop being short-staffed and Helen being away? Can anyone fill me in? HappyAnya

• Hello Anya, it’s Susan Carter here, temporary manager at Bridge Farm; I’m drawing on my extensive retail experience to sort out the pickle they’ve got themselves into. Let’s just say Pat’s got enough on her plate, what with Rob wanting custody of Helen’s cute little baby and Henry as well, and that prison’s such a long way away…  Nothing for you to worry about. Anyway, can you tell me what size you are so I can order you a nice polyester tabard? SalesguruSue  

Letter to the Editor 

Dear Madam,

I am writing to ask if any of your readers recently left some items in our hotel. We cannot return them directly as the guests in question registered as ‘Mr and Mrs Smith’, but we found a rolled-up copy of The Ambridge Observer and thought they may live in south Borsetshire?
The housekeeper who serviced the room was too traumatised by what she saw to give a clear description but suffice it to say the guests were a couple of a certain age. The lost property includes expensive intimate apparel, a silk smoking jacket, a pair of fluffy handcuffs, a half-empty bottle of gin and an economy-sized tube of Voltarol.
If any of your readers recognise these items could they please contact me in confidence to arrange their safe return.
Yours faithfully
C. Nittall, Manager, Old Chestnuts Hotel, Peak District.



  1. I must say that the pharmacist advised me that Voltarol should not be used in 'personal' areas, as it could cause intense irritation, but clearly this couple were an 'access all zones' type of clientele.

    I just hope they never head for a midnight tryst in Lynda's Shepherd's Hut with a spray-can of Deep Heat.

    I dread to think of the fate of the drop-down bed! And how Lilian would explain those painfully positioned splinters to Jennifer the following morning.

    Signed a suburban Berkshire housewife *Blush*

    1. Yes indeed Cathy - I think next week's issue needs a manufacturer's disclaimer on correct usage of analgesic creams... it would be awful if Justin and Lilian inspired any accidents...