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The Pigeon

At last, this U-turning miss-mash of Government Ministers are having to face and deal deal with the shoal of money lending sharks offering instant wonga to cash-desperate families at interest rates that defy gravity. Hundreds of years ago they wore masks, brandished pistols and were called ‘Highway Robbers’. When brought to justice they were strung up at the nearest gallows.

The difference today is they are allowed to advertise their services (greed) in newspapers, magazines and on television, tempting poor folk with ‘pay-day’ loan deals containing eye watering percentage rates that sends their victims deeper into the money mire.

All this without pistols or masks! Now a group of consumer and anti-poverty charities including MP’s and church action groups, have launched a charter calling on the government to tackle these 21st century bandits. But why do we need a time consuming charter, I am sure the government has powers to close down these nefarious deeds and should act now, not wait for months to pass while more pain is inflicted.

Even in prosperous Cheltenham Spa, with it’s festivals and functions, it’s high climbing property values and crowded restaurants, there will be needy, honest folk worrying about the coming winter heating bills and putting food on the table.

I will give you a vote winner Mr. Prime Minister, forget HS2 railway lines and extra Heathrow runways. Think not once, or twice, but several times before launching into any further schemes which might be either delayed or cancelled at vast expenditure – and help the deserving poor both young and old in this county and country by creating a government sponsored ‘Poverty Bank’ with a kindly sensible interest rate of 3% – even that is more than folk get from the building society – so you will still be making a profit – give it some thought David.

Pigeon Footnote. I see that the Regent Arcade fish shop is no more – the big problem was they did not offer cod, haddock, bream or sole. There were no paper cones of salt and vinegary chips, No mushy peas or curry sauce. Just a large water tank filled with shoals of foot fetish sardines. Customers were invited to remove shoes and socks then plunge their tootsies into the fungus nibbling mass of invertebrates. Glancing through the shop’s plate glass windows was not a very appetising sight. Not quite my Fish and Chips. Nor it would seem many other passersby.