There were red faces and some ‘lolz’ up and down Harold High Street when it emerged that many readers had been taken in by one of our April fool stories – but did you spot it?
Residents awoke to a straight-faced article on the business pages of our off-line version that explained how Mexican regulators had given the go ahead for the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC) to take a ‘significant’ share of the local operations of Grupo Financiero Banorte, S.A.B. de C.V., (Banorte), one of the big four Mexican commercial banks.
But the joke was on them, because nothing of the sort had happened, and it appears many readers believed the story, answering “yes” when asked if they believed the story.
Saving it all for a rainy day.
Language experts have welcomed Philip Hammond’s use of simplified English to explain esoteric financial matters to the general public.
“I struggle to avoid glazing over when economists refer to complex fiscal concepts like ‘contingency fund’,” said literary critic Peter Pentop, “but the idea of putting petrol in the tank before embarking on a car journey suddenly makes everything clear. I guess he’s putting up fuel duty from midnight.”
Scientists at Dunstable Metropolitan University were stunned by results of a DNA analysis of the chili sauce at local Harold kebab shop I Shish You Not!
, when data showed that no human semen was present, a new report revealed today.
“We had always assumed that the employees were rubbing themselves off like a troop of monkeys back there,” commented Dr Pauline Copland, lead food scientist at Dunstable Met where the study was performed.
Former Smiths front-man Steven “Morrissey” Morrissey spends his days quietly scanning the Times obituary columns for news of Queen Elizabeth II, knowing that when she finally does pass away, his 1986 Album ‘The Queen is Dead’ will most likely be swept to number 1 by a sombre, patriotic nation.
Morrissey practising his mournful look
“We [The Smiths] toyed with the idea of a perennial Christmas song, like Mariah Carey and Wham did, but the market was a bit crowded, so ‘How Soon is Christmas?’ eventually became the track we all know as ‘How Soon is Now?’, and ‘Santa in a Coma’ just got binned,” chirped the happy-go-lucky crooner.
“Then Johnny [Marr] said we should put down a track that played the long game – a little retirement bonus for us if you will – and we bounced around some ideas for blue ocean strategies, where we would be guaranteed to be the go-to track when some inevitable future event happened.”
That track was ‘The Queen is Dead’, and the album of the same name became one of the defining albums of the eighties, but Morrissey expects a revival of its success when the Queen finally does die.
Morrissey points to the boost Prince got when 1999 eventually happened, and the windfall enjoyed by The Primitives following the death of Princess Diana, and chuckles, “This is one set of royalties I’m really looking forward to.”
We’d pay to make it stop
Fears are growing that Tony Blair will do anything for money after if was revealed that he now performs nightly belly-dances for Saudi royalty.
Blair is known to have a wide range of opaque business interests, but it was never suspected just how far the former Prime Minister would go for cash until details of his fleshy writhing leaked out.
The Middle-East envoy role held by Blair included a certain degree of consultation over business affairs, but many are shocked to see him stripping nearly naked and wriggling lasciviously for the pleasure of the Saudi royal family.
A spokesman for Blair admitted that exotic dancing had happened, but denied that it was in any way inappropriate.
“It’s not like he’s advising savage dictators in Kazakhstan,” he pointed out.
“That was last week.”
Filed under Business, Smug
Now nick & collect, rule judges
A court order banning the theft of goods from Tesco Express in Harold has been lifted. Court of Appeal judges accepted local thief Mark Kettle’s bid to lift the ban, and said the overt pilfering of items from the shop could start, pending a possible appeal from the manager.
The judges said the practice of nicking jars of coffee and packets of Haribo from Tesco Express had now been widely established and it was no longer in the public interest to maintain the ban.
They gave the shop time to apply to take the case to Dunstable Supreme Court. In the ruling, they said there must be no theft leading to getting caught before 13:00 BST on Wednesday. The shop has until 10:00 BST today to submit arguments to the Supreme Court.
Bank, then a launderette, now a poundshop.
From the outside, it looked like any other High Street Bank. But behind the heavy wooden doors, a laundering operation was providing services for working people with no washing machines of their own.
Documents obtained by the Evening Harold from the local Planning Committee reveal conclusively that a ‘change of use’ application was approved in 1959, subject to the building retaining its original facade.
“I’m not surprised at all,” said Doris Kettle who remembers well the massive ‘just one more sixpence’ launderette drying machine swindle of the 1960s.
“I see trees, lots and lots of trees”
David Cameron says he will not sleep until he’s trawled through all the Panama Papers to find someone who’s been overpaid £50 of Jobseeker’s Allowance.
“My mother always said ‘look after the pennies and the pounds will look after themselves’, so I’m determined to go through the 11 million leaked Panamanian files and catch a few welfare cheats, and rely on the super-rich to look after themselves” said Cameron.
Filed under Business, News
“No, they all taste like that. Don’t worry.”
Serial tax-system-rapists, Starbucks will open a store in Milan next year, says CEO Toby Green. “We open in Milan, then further stores will be rolled out across the country. Think of waves of Sherman tanks in 1943.”
“Basically, we’ll f%ck the Italian treasury up the a%se from Sicily to the Swiss border, with Rohypnol-laced champagne cocktail parties and our tried-and-trusted off-shore profits, on-shore losses tax strategy. It worked like a dream in the UK. Well, we told them it was a dream.”
Once the whole country has been impoverished, the Starbucks outreach team will return to Milan. “Italian culture gave us espresso, Ferraris and more recently, multi-million dollar compensation packages.” says Green “and we want to demonstrate our respect for that culture and tradition.”
“So when we get back to Milan we’ll be hanging their Finance Minister from a lamp-post in the Piazzale Loreto.”
Filed under Business, News
“…we’ll still be holding up our punters by their ankles, to shake out any loose change”
Ladbrokes, one of the the high street’s leading money-hoovering bastards, have posted their worst ever losses, to the delight of the nation’s gambling addicts.
Outgoing CEO, Richard Glynn, explained his simple recovery plan, which will leave his successor in a sound position; guaranteed mate, can’t fail. “Step one, we’ve a £10m accumulator with Betfred, for the first five races at Kempton Park on Saturday. That’s a dead cert so we’ll be well ahead by tea-time”.
“If that doesn’t work and we’ve no reason to think it won’t, step two means staking all February’s takings on Jeb Bush winning Continue reading
Barbaric and medieval.
It was once the nation’s least-favourite toilet paper, but Izal may soon be available again in selected outlets.
“Obviously, the name Izal is a bit soiled by association now,” said Harold businessman Woodrow Gunther, who has acquired the firm for £1, “so we needed a new brand name. We were thinking about that unique combination of sprouts and Quality Street and alcohol and dried fruit and sprouts and After Eights and alcohol you get at Christmas, and very quickly came up with the name Dash!.”
“The problem with Izal,” he explained, “is that it’s been smeared thanks to Obama using a sound-alike word to refer to Islamic State. So that was a bummer.” Continue reading
‘I’m going to write to Watchdog, blah, blah, blahdy blah….’
Breaking with years of well established tradition Mrs Fiona Warburton of Harold managed to complain to EDF about the accuracy of her energy bills without once mentioning her elderly mother’s advanced Alzheimer’s or her daughter’s terminal leukaemia. Continue reading
The proud new building should stand for at least another 10 years and 1 month.
David Cameron has saved £7bn on the cost of restoring the Houses of Parliament, by granting the contract to China.
For the mere informality of signing over the freehold, politicians will have somewhere to sit for the next 99 years.
“This is excellent news for the UK tax payer”, said Cameron. “They’re even throwing in a big ‘tribute’ iWatch to replace Big Ben.”
Was this typed with a straight face?
Amazon has confirmed that unscrupulous shoppers who leave 5-star reviews of films, despite them containing Adam Sandler, will be sued.
Although Sandler has near-universal unappeal, some malicious trolls have gushed all over his leavings on the popular online shop.
Amazon fears this could cause unwary customers to order them, which might damage their trust in the tax-efficient company.
In the middle of the night he worries: ‘What if there is a god?’
As yet more steelworkers’ jobs are about to be axed, Business Secretary Sajid Javid has confirmed that the Northern Powerhouse is ‘just pretend’.
“All right, all right… Look, we came up with the expression one evening, after a very fine dinner. It was only ever meant as a joke, but Continue reading
A fitting tribute to Pat.
Concerned employees at Amalgamated Holdings Ltd have been mystified by a growing collection of soiled cups.
Initially, minor queries were raised with each other about whether the cleaning contract had been renewed, not realising that for the last 15 years the dishes had been done by Pat in accounts.
“I do like a cup of tea first thing” said managing director Justine Hostage, “and I never gave a thought to how our mugs got clean and put back in the cupboard. It was Mike who said he’d seen Pat doing it before, and then we realised no-one had heard from her for three weeks.” Continue reading
The environmental damage wrought by the diesel emissions cheating scandal has been rectified by the hanging up of a hotel towel, according to VW chairman Hans Dieter Poetsch.
“I thought of the environment and hung up the towel” beamed Poetsch.
“As soon as I put the towel on the rack, I could sense all those emissions vanishing into thin air. I felt the melting iceberg refreeze, and tears welled up in my eyes as I realised that starving polar bear would see his family again.”
“Emissions? No, this cigar has a catalytic converter.”
Rogues have come a long way from the fifties and sixties, where they were marginalised into cheeky but loveable roles on the fringes of the economy; think George Cole as Arthur Daley.
You now find rogues occupying important roles in industry, finance and the public sector. But there is still “much to do” say leading rogues, as they continue to be blamed for many of societies ills.
From institutional racism in the police, to systematic greed in the banking sector, the finger is often pointed at a rogue.
And now VW, who find themselves engulfed by emissions test fixing scandals, are suggesting that rogues working as engineers at VW are to blame.
“We just do what they allow us to do,” writes an anonymous rogue in a book that promises to ” lift the lid ” on rogue culture, breaking their strict code of silence.
“Or we just do what everyone else is doing…but with a naughty glint in our eye, and a cheeky smile.”
However rogue community leaders have distanced themselves from the new book, dismissing it as the work of a rogue rogue.
Need no batteries
In a surprising move, Harold’s largest book retailer is to stop selling electrical goods and replace them with books.
James Daunt, the managing director of Musty Books, said: “We were told that paper was old hat and the future was in stuff that could be plugged in, especially from Amazon”.
“So we shifted out the paperbacks to the local Oxfam, and stocked up on microwaves, irons, kitchenaids and nutribullets Continue reading
Starbucks executives are furious after an incautious purchase of a plastic bag resulted in the multinational making its first ever contribution to the UK Exchequer.
“5p doesn’t sound like much, but it’s a matter of principle” said Starbucks UK head Mark Fox.
Filed under Business, News