Sunday, 5 February 2017

Lilian in flagrante, Toby in trouble and Rob on the run: unprecedented scenes in Ambridge

Titchener still at large after kidnap attempt

Borsetshire’s Rural Crime Unit (PC Harrison Burns) has warned the public not to approach Rob Titchener, who is on the run and is said to be ‘desperate and dangerous’ after a failed attempt to kidnap his baby son.
‘Police were called to Bridge Farm some hours after the incident,’ PC Burns told a packed press briefing. ‘We believe Mr Titchener had been watching the house, and snatched the baby from Helen Archer’s car while she was fetching a book for Jack’s brother Henry.
‘When she realised what had happened she went after Mr Titchener and caught up with him at Sawyers Farm, where the storm had blown a tree down across the road. When he refused to give the baby back a violent struggle ensued. If it were not for the arrival of Pat Archer and Kirsty Miller, who were driving back to Bridge Farm together, the outcome could have been very different.
‘Helen Archer should really have called the police straightaway, instead of trying to rescue Jack herself,’ PC Burns said. ‘But actually I was quite glad she didn’t as Fallon had made chicken fajitas for tea and they’re my favourite.
‘As it was, the three women proved more than a match for Mr Titchener, who handed baby Jack over and fled the scene. But child abduction is a very serious offence and Mr Titchener will be arrested as soon as he is found. Although I expect they’ll bring DS ‘Maverick’ Madeley in again for that, like they did with the stabbing. And it will be back to the missing bunting for me. Mind how you go now.’

Titchener kidnap shock: Ambridge reacts

As the news of this week’s events spread, we asked local residents for their views:

Justin Elliott, Damara Capital: Mr Titchener is a former employee and I have no comment to make. Except to say that I understand rumours are circulating that when Mr Titchener was employed at Berrow Farm in 2015, he was responsible for the Ambridge flood. Damara Capital denies all knowledge of this and our lawyers will be studying any suggestions of wrongdoing very closely.       
• Rev Alan Franks, St Stephen’s Church: I am very sorry to hear this news, but to be honest I am not surprised. Rob is a troubled soul, although I tried to reach out to him. But when he didn’t attend my last ‘Blokes, Bacon Butties and Bible Breakfast’ I was afraid we had lost him.   
Lily Pargetter, Lower Loxley: Is it true Rob was stuck in the lane because of a fallen tree? So, basically, he got caught because he couldn’t do a three-point turn? How lame. I’ve only just started driving and I can do a three-point turn without even slowing down. Ask my Uncle David.  
Saskia Waitrose, Penny Hassett: I’m completely appalled. My son Elijah was expecting Henry Archer to come over for organic pizza and Transformers, but he didn’t turn up and his mummy didn’t even phone to let me know. So selfish. Elijah and I will be working through his issues on this for weeks.   
• Tracy Horrobin, Ambridge: Ooh, so Rob Titchener’s definitely single now? He sounds more exciting than Roy Tucker. And they’ve got the same initials, so no need to change my new tattoo. Look: RT4EVA.  Have you got his number?

Business news: Ambridge vets plan bold new venture

Ambridge vet Alistair Lloyd and new business partner Anisha Jayacoady have announced a £250,000 investment in their practice, which will cement its position as one of the most high-tech in Borsetshire.
‘Anisha is a highly-qualified equine vet, and we have a great opportunity to attract more clients now that my wife Shula is joint master of the South Borsetshire Hunt,’ said Mr Lloyd.  ‘Although with the overdraft we need, she may have to wait for that tailor-made jacket I promised her.’
‘Alistair has been stuck in the ‘bran-mash and poultices’ market for too long, so he took some persuading to splash out on cutting-edge equipment,’ said Ms Jayacoady. ‘But he changed his mind when I told him it would be a gamble. For some reason that really appealed to him.’  

Ask Auntie Satya

With her warm wit and forensic legal skills, Auntie Satya has the answers to all your practical and emotional dilemmas!

Dear Auntie Satya,

My boyfriend tells me he loves living with me rent-free, on the farm my dad owns, and after I’d given him all my money I thought we were settling down nicely. But just as I was ordering a new sofa and matching onesies for us he disappeared to Brighton. When he came back he told me his mysterious trips are to look after a heroin-addicted ex-girlfriend. He swears he’ll tell me the truth from now on, but do you think I can trust him? Pip.

Dear Pip,

In all matters of the heart, actions speak louder than words. I suggest that the next time your boyfriend is called to Brighton, you offer to drive him, taking along a tin of your grandmother’s home-made flapjacks as a gift for this unfortunate girl. His reaction to this plan is likely to answer your question.   

Dear Auntie Satya,

My lover and I were sharing a romantic breakfast of salami and Double Gloucester earlier this week, when his wife returned unexpectedly. I had to make a run for it wearing only my fur coat, negligée and his wellies, while he desperately tried to put the cork back in his Dom Perignon. My friend Jolene says I should press him for a more permanent arrangement, but to be honest all the subterfuge makes me feel young, darling. What do you think? Lilian.

Dear Lilian,

I am all for joie de vivre, but your behaviour is risky, especially at your time of life. You could make yourself ill, sneaking around in your scanties. However, if you are addicted to the excitement as you say, at least take practical steps to avoid freezing in the shrubbery while waiting for a taxi. Perhaps your paramour could build you a shed?

Dear Auntie Satya,

A woman I didn’t want to go out with wouldn’t take the hint, so I pretended to be extremely boring to put her off. It worked, but now she’s telling everyone I am the dullest man in Borsetshire. How can I convince potential dates that I’m actually quite interesting? Roy.

Dear Roy,

This is a tricky dilemma. Trying to prove you are interesting is exhausting and may be counter-productive. Instead, I am reminded of a saying of my dear Great-Uncle Krishna (some people claim Abraham Lincoln or Mark Twain coined this phrase, but I know better). It is: 'Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than to speak and remove all doubt.' Keep your counsel, Roy, and the ladies will come running. Good luck! 


  1. Oh, why haven't I discovered 'The Ambridge Observer' before? I have been missing such a treat and haven't chuckled so much in ages. I am now going to go back and read all the available 'copies'. Thank you so much.

    1. Excellent news Carolyn; new readers always very welcome. There's two years' worth to catch up on; you might need a few cups of tea!

  2. Another super edition. I laughed aloud at the fajita comment, then had to read the whole piece to my husband, who is very gradually coming out of the (Archers) closet.

    1. Lovely to hear Christine; let's get your husband out of that closet and firmly lock the door behind him. Out and proud!

  3. Replies
    1. She was livid, poor woman. Practically chewed off our reporter's ear until she was distracted by Elijah trying to feed quinoa to the labradoodle.

  4. Still looking for the bunting? Quality

    1. It comes up at PC Burns's appraisal every time... sigh.

    2. "Helen Archer should really have called the police straightaway, instead of trying to rescue Jack herself,’ PC Burns said. ‘But actually I was quite glad she didn’t as Fallon had made chicken fajitas for tea and they’re my favourite."

      "three women"? Wasn't Tom there, too?

  5. I've just discovered the news sheet, courtesy of Mustardland. Cracking. You have gained a regular 🤗🤗

  6. Very pleased to hear it, HBM, thank you! Mustardland is a fine institution. If a little scary, even for cynical old hacks from the Ambridge Observer!

  7. I haven't forgotten the bunting either...