Welborne – Affordable homes from £55k – but there’s a catch

Welborne - behind the kite flying and the manicured lawns.

Welborne – behind the kite flying and the manicured lawns.

Fareham Borough Councils’ Camorra representative, Sean Woodchuckio – currently marketing Welborne Garden Village with kites and manicured lawns – today vowed that the controversial development would be all inclusive, with 2,000 new dwellings to be made immediately available at affordable levels. [Read more…]


Titchfield Councillor calls for withdrawal from Fareham Market

Lord Mustard Pants Of Thanet - still smiling despite becoming an endangered species.

Somebody who vaguely resembles Councillor Cheeseman pictured before he got leathered down the pub recently.

Titchfield TCIP (Titchfield and Catisfield Independence Party) councillor Nobby Cheeseman has called on Titchfield traders to withdraw from Fareham market on the basis that that the market is undemocratic, a dictatorship, and that Fareham Borough Council’s stance on imported cheeses from outside farmers’ markets and French markets is devaluing traditional Titchfield cheese producers.

“We must retake Titchfield and regain control over our cheese market,” Councillor Cheeseman said over a pint and a ploughman’s at Titchfield Mill. “I’m not cheesist in any way but when Titchfield cheese producers put their goods on offer at Fareham Market there’s way too much red tape and they’re subjected to extortionate fees for stall rental and, quite frankly outrageous parking fees. We need to get out now and start our own cheese market. I’ve heard there’s a massive demand for Titchfield cheeses in outer Mongolia, and that’s how we should be looking at this issue. There’s a global market out there, so why bother with Fareham? It doesn’t make sense and it’s a bad deal for Titchfield. Our cheesemakers contribute about £350 per week to Fareham Borough Council, and that money would be better spent on First Aid courses at the village hall. We should have it painted on the side of a transit van or something to promote awareness.”

Local dimwit and aspiring politician Tom Slavish commented: “I’m not sure what’s happening here to be honest but I’ll assess the situation, test the waters and then come out on the side of whoever’s winning the argument.”

More as we get it.

Cafe Spike


Travellers Didn’t Want To Stop At Fareham

Fareham - world leader in mobile technology and human rights.

Fareham – world leader in mobile technology, charity shops and human rights.

A group of travellers basing themselves temporarily at Locks Heath, near Fareham in Hampshire have apologised for any inconvenience caused to outraged local residents by explaining that Fareham wasn’t on their original itinerary and that they had been forced by unforeseen circumstances to make an emergency stopover.

“Two of our vehicles were beset by mechanical problems,” a spokesman for the travellers told The Nose. “So unfortunately we had to pull in by Locks Heath shopping centre. I say unfortunately, because whereby many local councils make provisions for travellers – such as running water and waste disposal facilities – Fareham Borough Council doesn’t. They don’t want us here and quite frankly we don’t want to be here either. But in an emergency, what can you do?”

Fareham resident Jim Soothill complained to neighbours that the travellers would soon be breaking into houses and stealing pet dogs unless people were exceptionally vigilant. Adding that womenfolk wouldn’t be safe from unwanted attention either.

“I expect the locals will be locking their doors and windows tonight,” the travellers spokesman added. “Not to mention their dogs and their daughters. It’s all a bit of a nonsense really, and quite hypocritical considering that the locals continually vote for an MP and a council who rob them blind on a daily basis. Believe me, we’ll be leaving ASAP before the locals mob up on us bearing flaming torches and set us all on fire. Like in that Frankenstein film.”

Cafe Spike approached Jim Soothill for further comment but he was otherwise engaged in handing out portions of home made lardy cake and igniting petrol soaked torches with a World War II issue Zippo lighter.

Reliable sources report that a prominent member of Fareham Borough Council, known locally as The Fat Controller was last seen scrambling aboard his WWII Spitfire fighter in order to undertake low level strafing runs against the invaders.

Locks Heath resident, Hazel Goodyear, 67, a spinster told us:

“I’ll be having an early night tonight. I’ve been warned about rapists on the prowl so I’ll be leaving the bedroom window open just in case.”

More as we get it.


Nine Hurt In Supermarket Beetroot Rampage

Some chips, made out of beetroot. Or it could be beetroot julienne. We aren't sure.

Some chips, made out of beetroot. Or it could be beetroot julienne. We aren’t sure.

A nationwide police manhunt is under way today following an incident in a Fareham supermarket which left nine people hurt after a man attacked customers at the meat counter by hurling beetroot at them, leaving behind a scene of absolute carnage. The assailant fled the scene on foot and hasn’t been seen since. The entire incident should have been caught on CCTV but the store manager, Walter Uttley explained that somebody had forgotten to plug the equipment in, promising that ‘heads will roll for this’ before the day is out.

Witnesses described the unidentified perpetrator loitering by the meat counter, fingering a huge jar of pickled beetroot slices and generally looking very shifty.

“All of a sudden he seemed to just snap,” shopper Sandra Monkton told our reporter. “He unscrewed the cap and started pelting the meat counter customers with beetroot slices. It was utter carnage. There was beetroot juice everywhere. I like beetroot as much as the next person but the sight of all that beetroot juice made me feel physically sick.”

“I was only queueing up for a nice bit of brisket for a pot-roast and I got hit three or four times,” customer Ron Beastly said. “On the eyebrow, the chest and then a couple of times in the back as I tried to take cover. It didn’t really hurt but I’m covered in beetroot juice.”

The incident only came to an end when quick thinking security guards wobbled to the scene causing the assailant to flee on foot.

“This was obviously a meatist attack carried out by some vegetarian or vegan nutter,” local beat bobby Horatio Nelson told a hastily convened press conference held in the foyer by the disposable charcoal grill sets and the placky garden furniture. “The culprit remains at large and we’re advising the public not to approach anyone who is heavily beetroot stained. We can’t give in to these meatist extremists. Meat is a British staple and a proud part of our heritage – apart from Fridays which tends to be fish and chip day. The sad thing is that this incident could have been avoided if more people carried their own beetroot – that way they could have fought back.”

More beetroot related shenanigans as we get them.

Paddy Berzinski


An Open Letter To Suella Fernandes

Fareham Doesn't Want Any More Of This Sort Of Thing

Fareham Doesn’t Want Any More Of This Sort Of Thing

Dear Suella,

Congratulations on your successful election campaign and we wish you every success in your new position, representing the people of Fareham in parliament over the coming five years and possibly beyond.

Right, that’s the formalities concluded. Now down to business.

It has come to our notice (‘our’ meaning my good lady wife and I, together, the two of us) that within a mere 48 hours of winning the seat, you appear to have certainly hit the ground running with your assertion that most people you have spoken to are in favour of the Welborne development plan, as outlined in an article for The News.

Upon reading this ambiguous statement we were left with a rather uncomfortable feeling deep within our roiling tummies.

How many people did you speak to? How many were against the project?

We ask simply because most people we’ve spoken to appear to be either blissfully unaware of the proposed development, or that they haven’t actually thought through the long term implications. The pro-Welborne stance maintains that the development will be an overall asset to the area, whereas a burgeoning anti-Welborne movement foresee nothing but chaos. The arguments on both sides have been pretty well documented, and we are confident that you will have spent many hours poring over reams of claim and counter-claim in order to familiarise yourself with a comprehensive overview of the contrasting arguments.

(You have my deepest sympathy for having the patience to scan reams of gobbledook and officialise – many years ago I too had to burn the midnight oil studying Thomas Hardy’s ‘Far From The Madding Crowd’ for a GCE O Level English Lit exam, so I am fully aware of what a pain in the posterior intensive cramming can actually be. Heaven alone knows how you barristers cope with all that swotting over masses of complicated books; in my experience Hardy was more than sufficiently challenging.)

All of which leads me to beg the question: What is your personal stance regarding Welborne, based on whatever information you have gleaned?

I ask this because there appear to be grave concerns among the anti-Welborne campaigners (whom the council leader allegedly refers to – somewhat dismissively by all accounts – as ‘keyboard warriors’) that you will, as an individual and a resident, toe the council line and unconditionally support the proposal.

Now, I must admit that I am not a supporter of the development plan, and add that I am not to the best of my knowledge a swivel eyed loon, although this may occasionally be a debatable point on the occasions when I’ve overdone it a bit on the mead. Thus it came about that I actually defended you this morning in our kitchen, to my wife as she was preparing a hearty fried breakfast – cholesterol and fat laden admittedly but you only live once, and a full English is one of life’s finest treats in my humble opinion.

“No,” I told my wife in no uncertain terms. “Suella will NOT be biased towards the local council in the great Welborne debate, because she is the elected representative of all the people of Fareham, and she will represent ALL of us equally – even the anti-Welborne rabble, for that is her duty.”

I Just Want A Normal Breakfast. Is That Too Much To Ask?

I Just Want A Normal Breakfast. Is That Too Much To Ask?

My wife didn’t seem completely convinced by my argument in your favour and as an expression of her disgust with me she subsequently smothered my breakfast in mingingly hot chilli sauce. Undeterred I ate my breakfast anyway and my eyes stopped streaming at about tea-time. Which is when I was moved to type out this message.

Are you for or against Welborne? Against or for? Or are you neutral?

The anti-Welborne movement have a Facebook page which you are cordially invited to join. They really aren’t a fanatical NIMBY type group – they welcome all opinions with an open mind.


I hope you can take time out from your busy schedule to confirm your stance on this matter, not least because I don’t think I can stand too many hot chilli smothered fried breakfasts as it’s starting to play havoc with my motions.

Yours Faithfully

Martin Shuttlecock


Welborne, The General Election, And Why We Can’t Trust The Media

Weekly please Mister Woodward.

Weekly please Mister Woodward.

On the subject of the proposed Welborne development – 6,000 new dwellings to be constructed on a greenfield site – this will be Café Spike’s final eve-of-election foray into this territory. We have a few things we’d like to say before we close the book on this subject and get back to posting a mix of comedy and articles which we think you may find interesting. We hope that as you read this article you’ll consider having a look at the other material our site has to offer. We mainly set out to entertain and amuse, but being based in Fareham we feel it appropriate to express our opinion over Welborne and local politics.

It’s pretty much a given that the Conservative party will take Fareham’s seat in Westminster, with Suella Fernandes as our representative in Westminster. Ergo, as surely as night follows day Welborne will become a stark reality Along with that will come the increasing burden on our infrastructure, with additional pressure being piled on our NHS, traffic chaos, agency jobs, a less than vibrant town centre, and essentially a future not as a community in our own right; just a dormitory community for London and other large centres in our area.

Which begs one to pose the question: Why is Fareham such a safe Conservative parliamentary seat?

We can afford Welborne, we can afford nonsensical traffic “solutions,” we can afford to do things like install pedestrian crossings a few yards away from an existing crossing, (Think Highlands Road) we can afford to charge extortionate parking fees, we can afford to have our town centre homogenised into a clone of every other town centre, totally devoid of any trace of local character, populated my multinational chains that most of us have no interest in using…and on and on.

But we can’t afford to keep our roads in good shape, we can’t afford to have weekly bin collections, and we can’t afford to fully inform our own people about proposed developments which will have far reaching effects on the lives of the people in our community.

Surely there’s something wrong somewhere? So how does this happen?

In fairness, most people who vote in general elections vote in order to influence the bigger picture – the national picture. People vote for the government they want because they feel that by doing so they’re doing what’s best for the country as a whole. Which is what makes this election crucial in our constituency, because the bottom line is that a Conservative vote will deliver Welborne. Thus local and national issues become inextricably entwined.

There are going to be people from this borough torn between their local and national political overviews, which is an unhappy situation.

Which is where I come clean and nail my underpants (stains and all) to the mast.

I was brought up in a safe Labour seat, and I could never see the sense in that either. People would vote Labour in spite of the evidence that their town was spinning into freefall decline everywhere they looked, but they seemed insanely oblivious to what was going on around them. So why do we vote blindly? Why do we take the safe option?

The media. That’s the simple answer.

Readers of the Times, Sun, Mail, Express, Telegraph and viewers of Sky News tend to vote Conservative. Readers of the Mirror tend to vote Labour. Guardian readers tend to be left of centre but seem to be too busy plucking fluff out of their navels to be arsed even voting at all. My point is that voting trends are heavily influenced by the media, whether we like it or not. Even the Independent is supporting a Conservative/Liberal Democrat coalition. So it isn’t actually as Independent as it would like to think.

Media owners have a vested interest in whoever may be incumbent in Number Ten, because they want to protect their wealth, maintain their power and influence, retain their virtually zero tax responsibilities and drop the odd crumb here and there to make Joe Public feel like he’s getting a fair crack of the whip.

If you think that’s a biased assumption, it might pay to remember how Ed Miliband was relentlessly ridiculed, how the media twisted the public perception of the Labour party into one of a paedophile/grooming gang sympathising nest of vipers, how Nick Clegg has been castigated for selling his party down the river, when the reality is that having entered into a coalition agreement he had little say in the matter. And what of UKIP and the Scottish Nationalists? I’m no lover of UKIP – I detest extreme right wing politics as much as I detest extreme left wing politics, but the smear campaigns against Nigel Farage and Nicola Sturgeon carried out by the media have reached pantomime proportions. It’s out of control, and people can’t seem to see beyond that.

Yet the Conservatives – despite having the worst record of any government in a century – are somehow looked upon as our saviours?

What we’d advise is that when you vote, you vote for the candidate best equipped to do the job you want them to do. Matters not if that be Conservative, Lib-Dem, Labour, UKIP, or Independent. What we’d say is to go with your heart and mind and vote for what you truly believe in, the candidate who wants to work for the community, and not what Rupert Murdoch or any other media mogul tells you to do, because they don’t give a damn about you, or your loved ones. It’s all about the money, the power, the megalomania.

As I said earlier, as of Friday our elected parliamentary representative will be Suella Fernandes – that’s a given. Some will be unhappy about this, and many won’t even realise what it actually is that they’re voting for. They’re just going to put the cross where they always have done. Which is precisely why we have safe seats. People don’t know any better. They aren’t thinking for themselves. They’re letting the media do their thinking for them because it’s easier that way.

And with that, Café Spike will back off with the serious stuff and get back to doing what we usually do – which is quite frankly just silly. But no sillier than the lies we’re all drip-fed on a daily basis.

Use your vote wisely.

Martin Shuttlecock.


How Do We Solve A Problem Like Suella?

Taking the piss out of the electorate since 2010

Taking the piss out of the electorate since 2010

With an election looming ever closer on the horizon, and with many residents of this fair borough feeling isolated and left out of the decision making process which we loosely describe as ‘democracy’ we here at Café Spike would like to pose a few points for consideration.

There has been a wellspring of well intentioned cynicism directed at our Conservative candidate, Suella Fernandes, in what is essentially a safe Conservative seat. Essentially, the local populace have viewed Suella’s selection as a candidate with deep suspicion, probably based on the assumption that her mission purpose is to get the thumbs up for the Welborne project with full support from the local borough council, and that our prospective member of parliament will take very little interest in local affairs once the deal is done.

The truth is that we have no way of knowing how Suella will interact with her constituents post election. Setting aside personal interests, and the way Suella has apparently closed down any kind of interaction with constituents who have criticised her on social media – given the depth of feeling – maybe it’s time to take a step back in order to assess the situation.

On a personal level, a massive development project has its pros and cons, so here at the Café we have no vested interest either way. Suella has been brought in to achieve an objective. She’s been drafted in to get the Welborne project up and running – but she shouldn’t be castigated for that. She’s just doing a job, and she can’t do that job without the approval of the electorate. It’s up to us. The bottom line is that we either give our approval to Welborne or we don’t.

I’m going to digress here, and I’m going to do a little bit of straight talking.

Today I attended Queen Alexandra Hospital with my wife. She had cancer surgery early in 2012 and a subsequent CT scan showed up an anomaly. We’ve had the best treatment and care that anyone could hope for, and all we can do is be thankful that we have the best doctors, nurses, surgeons and staff anywhere. Today my wife had to have a more intensive scan – a CT/PET scan.

We got the best treatment and the best staff we could wish for. But there was one disturbing aspect – the scan was conducted by a private company, presumably one who sends the bill to the NHS. We can only assume that tax payers’ money used to pay said bill also pays dividends for the private company concerned. We could be wrong, but the alternative makes no sense.

Make no mistake – your vote on Thursday will have a resounding effect on all of our futures – and no, before you start harrumphing this isn’t a fucking party political broadcast.

If you vote for Suella, you’re voting for the most deceitful, incompetent government in a century. (Research the figures, this is not political spin.) If you vote for Suella you’ll get Welborne, and on a higher plane you’ll get increasing privatisation of our treasured NHS. You’ll also get minimal workers’ rights, the most vulnerable in society targeted and basically the same bum deal, lies and spin you’ve been subjected to for the last five years.

Do we have a political objective here at Café Spike? In a word, no.

I’ll come clean here and freely admit that being born and brought up in Lancashire, my politics do lean slightly towards the left. I saw first hand how Margaret Thatcher destroyed communities and introduced the welfare culture so despised by so many Conservatives today. Yet they were the party who founded it all – and somehow Thatcher has achieved a status approaching sainthood amongst the Conservative faithful.

This won’t go down well in this constituency, but vote for Suella and you will get Welborne. There will be no turning back.

I’m going to vote Labour, but I wouldn’t encourage anyone else to do so. Labour are no different to the Conservatives – they’re all career politicians and all completely out of touch with ordinary people. I’d rather be boiled alive in my own urine than vote UKIP, and the Greens are just stark raving bonkers. The Liberal Democrats in this area have quite a good reputation, and their councillors do a good job, so maybe that’s the alternative. It’s a point worth pondering.

In closing, what I would say to the electorate here in Fareham is, don’t vote Conservative if you don’t want Welborne and you want QA to be available to take care of your health needs.

I appreciate that most voters in Fareham are dyed in the wool Conservatives, but Suella and co really aren’t about to do you any favours at all. They’ll deliver all right – more housing, more strain on the already creaking infrastructure, more traffic jams, more chain coffee shops, a diminished NHS, higher taxes and more benefit cuts.

And Welborne – Mr Woodward’s ‘legacy’

It’s in your hands. Suella is just doing a job.

Martin Shuttlecock.


Furore In Fareham As ‘Outsider’ Conservative Candidate Backs Controversial Development Plan

Fareham says 'No' to this sort of thing.

Fareham says ‘No’ to this sort of thing.

One doesn’t normally expect political controversy in what is regarded as one of the safest Conservative seats in the country, yet somehow the Conservative party, aided and abetted by the local council seemed to have successfully achieved the political equivalent of poking the proverbial hornets’ nest with a sharp stick.

The current furore has historical roots in an ambitious development plan to the north of the town, known locally as Welborne; a plan embracing some 6,000 additional dwellings, which has been embraced by the council and vehemently opposed by residents of the borough. As Café Spike’s head office is in Fareham, and given that we have the right to express an opinion, our Editor In Chief, Martin Shuttlecock today issued a statement.

“There’s been a long-running dispute about this development proposal,” he told us. “On balance it appears that the local council have a vested interest in proceeding with the plan, whereas local residents have expressed deep – and quite reasonable concerns – over associated infrastructure problems. Whilst I accept that our country needs additional housing to meet the requirements stipulated by the government, it’s also quite reasonable to take into account the concerns of existing residents. These people are distinctly not NIMBY types; they’re concerned about a lack of affordable housing in the area, the destruction of a vast area of greenfield designated land in pursuit of further urbanisation, the provision of schools, the availability of medical treatment on a system which is already horrendously overstretched, endless traffic jams on already gridlocked roads and fears of becoming swallowed up by an endless urban sprawl.

“The furore, which was already blazing as a result of a lack of transparency by the local council – who appear to have a vision of a megalithic conurbation tentatively branded Solent City – was further inflamed when the Conservative party “parachuted” in out-of-towner candidate, Suella Fernandes to contest the seat at the forthcoming general election.

“Suella Fernandes is a Conservative candidate who has unsuccessfully contested seats in other constituencies in the past. According to reports she is a property lawyer who has been ‘parachuted’ in by the Conservative party at both local and national level with a mission to seal the Welborne deal, come what may, as evidenced by her immediate support for the Welborne project, despite not being in full possession of the relevant details.

“Some voters have expressed concerns that Fernandes has been conducting a below-the-belt campaign by claiming to be a local person who has the interests of local people at heart, and the voters don’t seem to be buying that.

“The bottom line is that she’ll be elected by a landslide, as Conservative candidates tend to be in this constituency, but I have to at least question her motivation in all this. The people of Fareham are good people, and my feeling is that they deserve the truth from the Conservatives at both national and council levels, and they aren’t getting that in my opinion.

“Of course, nobody would ever come out and make an honest statement to the effect of: We stand to make a fortune out of this, and so do the developers, so just kindly shut up and go away.

“Which is a shame, because the people deserve honesty, and they aren’t getting it at all. At least in my opinion.”

*The anti-Welborne/development group have a Facebook page – Fareham – Countryside Or More Housing – The Big Debate. Contributors to the page aren’t by any means fanatical; they’re actually quite accommodating and friendly on both sides of the argument. If you join the page your views will be respected and the participants are willing to discuss the issue without going overboard or being unreasonable. Unlike the prospective Member Of Parliament, who by all accounts has embraced the Welborne project yet blocked anyone from her Twitter feed with the temerity to question her claims.

Café Spike has no vested interest in the argument and acts purely as an independent observational entity.

Martin Shuttlecock and Paddy Berzinski