Latest news

To nominate a town, post a comment or send an email to

17 May

There’s a town called Eye! Who knew. It’s in Suffolk. And guess what? Yes, that’s right. It’s crap.


16 May

We have a cracking new entry for Mayfair, a cracking old entry for Bury St Edmunds, brought back thanks to weight of nominations and much more on the way soon. There’s also going to be a big sight overhaul soon. Terrifyingly, this thing is going to start looking professional…

Thanks for all the nominations that have been coming in in the meantime. I’ll get to them soon, promise!

13 April 

Broxburn: a classic nomination, from years back, brought back to the light by popular demand…

In Memoriam

I for one am not going to join in the celebrations now that Mrs Thatcher has finally moved on to her new role, closing down the furnaces in hell.

Unlike the millions she threw out of work, I owe her a debt of gratitude. Without her, most Crap Towns would almost certainly still be all right. People would still have jobs, and pride and a sense of community. And then what would I write about?

So thanks Mrs Thatcher. I’m grateful. You gave me something to do. Here’s a nice picture of you looking happy, so we can remember you at your best:


Maggie and Jimmy. Together again at last!

25 March

We’ve got an amazing new post about London from Shit London.

Also, this post from buzzfeed is hilarious.

What do people most often ask about when they google British towns? How crap they are, of course.


Yes, Brighton is crap. I’m rather confused by that Staffor entry, however…

11 March

High Wycombe isn’t entirely bland. It has a chair museum” This place is very expensive. But still crap.

And then, there’s Antrim. “Dilapidated council estates, more sportswear than Niketown Oxford Circus and 12 year old girls scary enough to make you want your mummy.”

28 February

Oh yes.

Crap Towns Returns cover

26 February

Rhyl: “You have to salute the tireless dedication with which Rhyl’s elders have made their once lovely and popular town so impressively unlikeable,” says Tim Moore.

18 February

Oh Gateshead. Fat capital of Britain. Derided by JB Priestly. Letting Tesco take over almost your entire town centre. Alas. Alack.

15 February

Nominations are closing fairly soon. But not yet! There’s still room for late entries. Like this soul-crushing piece on Jarrow. Ouch!

13 February

Everything we’ve done on Crap Towns is secretly a tribute to Morrissey. This film goes a long way to explaining why:

This film about Hulme is fascinating too.

12 February

You can now find craptowns on instagram: I’ll be adding bits of pieces as I wonder around the UK in the next few weeks…

In other news, Brighouse has suddenly had a flurry of nominations. So too has Gateshead, although I’m still waiting for the definitive article. If you want it in the book, get writing!

Talking of the book, it’s almost full. In fact, over full. Should have made it the worst 79 towns in the country… At this rate, Wootton Bassett might not even make the final cut…

11 February

Luton is back!. There have also been great nominations for Sheerness and Tottenham.

24 January

Entries are flooding in! I’ll put more up next week. In the meantime, sad tidings from Blackburn. And even sadder from Jaywick. Normally, receiving Crap Towns entries is a joy and very funny. The Jaywick story, however, is just crushing. But important. Do we really want a society that can abandon so many people so cruelly?

15 January

Of course they call Hatfield Shatfield! But that doesn’t stop the joke being funny…

9 January

At last. The big one. The one that so many people have been writing in about: Chipping Norton. There’s plenty more material to come. (And a fair bit extra here too.)

31 December

Happy New Year!

21 December

A festive entry I’ve been saving up. Louth. Lurking evil. And dinner ruined.

Thank you for all the entries and making me laugh so much this year. I look forward to reading more in 2013!

19 December

The return of another old, smelly friend: Widnes

14 December

it hurts

Oh Hackney

10 December Bingley! Teddington! Barrow In Furness! Your time is up.

At last I’m starting to hit some of the backlog of nominations. So don’t despair if you sent something in yonks ago, and it hasn’t yet arrived on the site, I’ll get to it. And please keep them coming. Oh yes, there’s a bit more on Bedford too…

7 December A lovely new meme is developing: “weird stuff I saw in Bedford.” I like it! Keep them coming.

6 December

I didn’t think that Bedford would feature again. But then people started writing in about the bus station…Including perhaps the strangest photo Crap Towns has seen so far..

5 December

Worksop! I hadn’t even heard of this place. And can’t say I’m glad that I have…

Also an hilarious comment has landed about Southampton. Much more fantastic correspondence about the town has been coming in by email too. Definitely a top three contender…

28 November

Brighton updated!  “We looked out into the shoddy back garden in the morning the other day and saw the next door toddler walking around with a fag in its mouth.”

There’s also an all new entry on the City of London, “the religious centre of Britain.”

16 November

“What I actually saw was a woman wearing “L” plates trying to touch a donkey’s privates.”

It was only a matter of time before we got to Blackpool. 

12 November

Oh la la! The French have invaded the site! Calais: “… rotting warehouses, and endless empty car parks. It looks almost as bad as Swindon.”

7 November

See Nuneaton and cry! We’ve got lots of new images of the poor town here and here.

2 November

I went to Leamington Spa the other day. Guess what. It was crap!

Wootton Bassett doesn’t sound like fun, meanwhile. Unless you’re horny, not too choosy and have some cake with you… 

24 October

Are you a cock? You might like Brighton then! Otherwise, you might want to stay away…

18 October

Huntingdon is back! I didn’t think we were going to have to include it this time around. I think I thought wrong. Read it and weep – with laughter.

9 October

A very short word on Axminster. (I was going to write short “and sweet”, but that’s not quite the word…)

Elsewhere, the Mansfield argument rages. I was thinking that it wouldn’t feature again, this time around. Shows how wrong I can be. Turns out there’s a huge vein of crap there we still haven’t mined…

5 October

Ah, London. Where everyone looks so happy.

25 September

Southampton! I’m expecting we’re going to hear much more about this one…

In the meantime, thanks for all the corruption emails. Very interesting! Am processing and following leads. Councils, eh?

18 September

Rank corruption, mining all within, infects unseen

Last night I took part in a debate at the University of Greenwich with the title: Bleak Towns: Does Reputation Matter? I gave a quick talk about Morecambe, its long decline and its more recent attempts to turn things around. Meanwhile, while Owen Hatherley, author of A New Kind Of Bleak, spoke about various colossal planning funk-ups around the nation. It was all tremendously interesting – but I shan’t bore you with the details. (You kind of had to be there.)

There is one fascinating point from the evening to bring up, however. During the Question and Answer session I stated (what I thought was) the uncontroversial opinion that lots of councils over the years have been inept and corrupt.

To my surprise, someone* stood up to challenge this position. I can’t remember his exact words, but the implication was that councils aren’t corrupt and even suggesting that they are is outrageous. “You need evidence to back up that kind of statement,” he said.

I was temporarily floored, but began to reel off a few rotten boroughs – at which point I was interrupted and we moved onto other things.

Later on twitter, however, more local councillors stepped in, suggesting that I was “blinkered” and really need to “Define corruption.”

Of course, I don’t want to make any libellous suggestions about the good people of Greenwich, but I’m still shocked that anyone would want to pretend our local authorities are free of sin or graft. I’m also particularly horrified that these people should be councillors themselves, since if anyone should be aware of graft, and on the alert for venality it should be them.

Naturally, as is the way with these things, I’ve thought of a thousand decent replies to the purer than pure councillor now that the time to actually say something has passed. And hallelujah, thanks to the marvels of the internet, I have the power and can bang them down now!


The shortest, and probably best answer is simply: What the fuck?
The slightly longer reply is: Thanks for that Tesco we didn’t want, dickheads.
The slightly even longer reply is: Lambeth, Doncaster, Hull, Wandsworth, Westminster, Hackney. Corruption was so endemic in Hackney that even their fraud department was investigated.

But the very best reply will be a colossal list of dirty deeds and rotten boroughs from around the country. I’ll be compiling a great many stories for the next edition of Crap Towns, and I thought it would be very interesting to hear from readers around the country – as well as cribbing from Private Eye.

So I’m putting the call out. If anyone has any stories of backhanders, dodgy planning deals, contracts awarded to friends and family, obstacles mysteriously placed in the way of projects, and mysteriously moved from others, of councillors turning up to work in surprisingly nice cars, of graft, of sin, of mendacity, of petty bureaucratic shit-kickery, do get in touch.Place a comment, a hint, an idea, a path to follow somewhere on the site. Or send me an email. Do it anonymously or publicly. Let’s nail the bastards.

*EDIT I’ve since been told that this was: David Gardner, a senior bod at KPMG, chair of the local Labour Party and former Assistant General Secretary of the Labour Party under Tony Blair. Apparently he doesn’t like the word “corruption”.

13 September

Can someone tell me why they thought Yorkshire needed another massive puddle?

You don’t even want to know how much it cost to put that thing in Bradford city centre. You can currently see more of the poor place in our picture of the day section. And here’s just a few of the nominations we’ve been getting for Bradford. Feel free to add more! At this stage, the place is pulling ahead…

We’d love to hear from you.

4 September

It’s a back to school York special. A coruscating attack on a town most people believe is quite pleasant. And a very, very unsettling picture of the day. She died for our sins!

29 August

Croydon is the gift that keeps on giving. New picture of the day.
Will also bring the promised Oldham material soon. And York. Boy have we had a good email about York.

21 August

We’ve been receiving lots of posts about Oldham recently. It isn’t sounding great there… We’ll be posting some highlights soon. Do keep them coming in the meantime!

Another hot contender is Stoke-On-Trent  – as a contributor calling himself Enzyme explains in this awesome post. Poor Stoke!

12 August

The Olympics is over. Britain is still crap. Sorry! Nous continuerons

10 August

Sorry for the long silence! I wish I could tell you that it’s because I’m taking August off like the rest of the middle-classes. The truth is that it’s actually because I’m doing so much work elsewhere. But nominations keep on flooding in and things will be back up to speed soon! In the meantime, here’s a short and not at all sweet message about Manningtree. I go through there on the train too. I always thought it looked rather pretty… Just goes to show that you never can tell.

26 July

Newquay: ” hedonism as imagined by Henry Ford”

24 July


20 July

Touching patriotism in the picture of the day.

And a searing indictment of Camberley. But at least it has a mall!

17 July

Lovely new picture of the day…

16 July

It’s anagram time today!  I can’t believe no one has pointed this out to us before…. Thanks readers!

Friday 13 July

Thanks to popular demand, we’ve started a picture of the day page to give the best (worst?) examples of urban decay and decline a moment in the spotlight before they migrate to the Wall Of Shame. Today’s is an irony free sign from the City of London.

If you have something you’d like to send in, just click this link to send an email to .

July 12

As promised,  here’s Glastonbury. Sexy Glastonbury…. Mmmm….

More soon.

July 11

Sorry, sorry, sorry for the lack of updates… So busy! Will be putting up more nominations later on this week. Loads of great ones have come in. Including Glastonbury. Who knew?!

July 4

USA! USA! USA! The town of the week is Thetford, a place so awful it inspired Thomas Paine to go off and establish America.

Also new on the site is the Wall Of Shame, a collection of images of typical tourist sights from around this glorious island.

And we’ve had dozens of hilarious nominations that will be arriving on the site soon. Keep them coming!

We’re also still reeling from the article about the recent Haworth and Bradford posts in The Bradford Telegraph and Argus (Withering Slights). Poor Bradford is riding high in the Crap Town stakes at the moment.

In the meantime, if you have another nomination, we’d love to hear from you. Nominating is easy. Just click this link and send an email to, or post a comment somewhere on this site. Anything you write in will be noted and counted – but it pays to write a reasonable amount, and make it as funny as possible, because we like to post the best entries up on the site, and those in turn attract a fair bit of attention… (You can get more information about Crap Towns and nomination here.)

Oh yes! Forgot to say – current entries can be found in the sidebar to the right of this post… Enjoy!

35 Responses to Latest news

  1. Budgie says:

    This comment is notification that a very funny nomination has been received about Manningtree and will be posted soon.

    (We don’t publish town nominating comments right away since we have to check through entries for legal problems, grammar, insane delusions about concreting architects into their own buildings… You get the picture. Rest assured that if you do nominate in the comments, we’re grateful and we will give your words our full attention!)

  2. Splinter says:

    This comment is notification that a very funny nomination has been received about Wooton Bassett and will be posted soon.

    (We don’t publish town nominating comments right away since we have to check through entries for legal problems, grammar, insane delusions about concreting architects into their own buildings… You get the picture. Rest assured that if you do nominate in the comments, we’re grateful and we will give your words our full attention!)

  3. TerriblyMiddleClass says:

    This comment is notification that a very funny nomination has been received about Teddington and will be posted soon.

    (We don’t publish town nominating comments right away since we have to check through entries for legal problems, grammar, insane delusions about concreting architects into their own buildings… You get the picture. Rest assured that if you do nominate in the comments, we’re grateful and we will give your words our full attention!)

  4. skempirate says:

    This comment is notification that a very funny nomination has been received about Skelmersdale and will be posted soon.

    (We don’t publish comments right away since we have to check through entries for legal problems, grammar, insane delusions about concreting architects into their own buildings… You get the picture. Rest assured that if you do nominate in the comments, we’re grateful and we will give your words our full attention!)

  5. Henny says:

    I’m drunk! hahahahahahahahahahaha

  6. Evan Casario says:

    I would like to thanking you for this I have enjoyed visiting your site. I’m looking forward never visiting any of these places/

  7. Lou says:

    Hey, thanks for a engaging blog, I really don’t in general attach blog comments but appreciated your blog post and so felt I would personally say thanks ! – Ava

  8. Johnny Sturtz says:

    Chipping Norton. And Cambridge. Please.

    • Liamj says:

      Lmao Cambridge, this sight is cock and bull, do you lot just list every and any town? Try all of east lancs for size of you think Cambridge is bad…Jesus what Evers the matter with people.

  9. Michael Dieter says:

    I’m bored at work so I decided to check out your blog during lunch break. Gotta love you limeys. Amazing site!

  10. Adam clifford says:

    PLEASE! put Calne in there! it is unbelievably crap!

  11. David Jordan Hawkins says:

    Trowbridge; a place that very few people ever get to see, as most end up lost forever on what is probably the most godawful one way system ever devised by man.

  12. Phil says:

    Hemel Hempstead in Herts must get a mention here.
    Seagulls fly upside down over Hemel Hempstead, there is nothing worth crapping on.!

  13. Norman Sordano says:

    What about Gateshead?!

  14. Josie says:

    Stratford. Both of them. For different reasons.

  15. Abby says:

    Please tell me that youre going to maintain this! Its so true. Where’s Hull?

  16. Harvey says:

    Hello there.

    I don’t know your motivation for the books or website but I hope you have put some profit aside to help change some of the things you or others are most upset about.

    If you have done this already I’d really be interested to see the results – I think that would be an enormously positive outcome. If this is the case please could you point me to where I can read more about it?

    Thanks so much for your time.

    Kind regards,

    (a bloke who also doesn’t think our towns are all necessarily that great – and would love them to be better places to live in).

  17. Denver Panzo says:

    Spot on with everything.

  18. Cathy Holmes says:

    Can I simply just say what a comfort it would be to find someone that
    actually understands what they are talking about over the internet rather than this deviance.

    I was surprised you are not less popular because you definitely possess the gift.

  19. Nathan says:


  20. samuel Jackson says:

    port glasgow is so bad I spent a week there one day.

  21. Nicola says:

    The worse place to live in the uk is medway!! It’s just one dump of a town after another, overrun with inbread chavs! It really is such a disgusting place they should blow up the dartford crossing!! Garden of England? ? ? Bah ha ha!

  22. ragadooly says:

    Ashford in Kent!!! No-one goes into the town centre unless they have to because of the tracksuited locals, gurning and grunting their way through existence. If you don’t typically wear a Chelsea/Man U shirt with a baseball cap, spit at random, use the c-word indiscriminately whilst smoking Benson & Hedges, all whilst swigging alcopops, then you’re probably not going to fit in. Friday nights often include renditions of various football songs and the occasional punch-up. There are high-speed services to London and Paris, which is probably what leads to a mass exodus of respectable citizens at the weekend, leaving the town centre to the marauding trolls.

  23. Hi Sam,

    While looking for an awful town to illustrate a point, I found your site.

    I know plenty of ‘CrapTowns’ but they are mostly seaside towns….at
    least they have interesting coast-lines, I lived in the toilet that is
    Bognor Regis for many years…..

    Can’t believe Corby hasn’t been mentioned on your site yet.

    I was living in lovely Rutland a couple of years ago and one day made
    the mistake of getting a bus to Corby.

    Having never been to a post-nuclear wasteland I was quite shocked but
    then realised the advantages of moving there if I ever feel

    Steve Caldecourt

    • Liamj says:

      I live in Corby, seriously, if you think Corby is bad, maybe england ain’t for you, it’s a thriving, rising town with a lot to offer, millions are put into Corby every year, take a journey up the m65 corridor and see what you make of Corby then, we are lucky!

  24. Wendy Dunne says:

    Llwynhendy in Llanelli Carmarthenshire and Llanelli itself has got to take top billing for the worst town in Wales and possibly the UK,Criminals get treated with more respect than decent citizens,even by Police ,Druggies full of bravado and I’m king of the world attitude gives them an edge over normal civilians that dont speak up because of a lack of confidence ,i’ts like the clip from that film Planet of the Apes when Charlton Heston while hanging from a trappers net bells out ,Get your stinking paws off me you damn dirty ape,and more importantly ,How did this upsidedown civilisation get started?Also there are certain people i cannot name for legal reasons that are being looked after by Mental health teams that are allowed to spread rumours (unfounded) that certain people are child perverts,when there is no evidence to suggest this is the case.needless to say this has a bad effect on individuals trying to live honest lives.Police in the area are now being blamed for using LSD on individuals it’s scrawled all over walls in the Llwynhendy area.i just want to add one more thing,i’ve lived up here for 20 yrs and not once until the last year has anyone said a friendly word to me .On the other hand when i go to my local place of worship they are friendly and loving individuals.The Masons are prominent in the town perhaps that’s something to do with it.That’s why i’m voting for Llanelli and neighbouring Llwynhendy as the worst town ever.Sincerely from my heart Wendy Dunne….

    • Liamj says:

      Wow, you are crazy, we are LUCKY, stop being pessemistic this is wales not Lebanon. Middle class do gooders, what are you like ey…

    • Liamj says:

      Had too read this again, you are a nut, please get help, you need it, I know you don’t see it but that is not normal, open your mind up a little bit and be positive, maybe your outlook will change and your paranoia will die down…

  25. Kevin says:

    Haverhill is ten times worse than Bury St. Edmunds, at least Bury’s high street isn’t riddled with Betting shops, funeral parlours and pound shops.

  26. Rob says:

    Oldham is the place to live if you are past caring about any meaning or quality to your life.

    In Oldham broken glass and discarded gas cylinders, interspersed with half-eaten take away food and dog excrement, pass for decorative gravel on streets that haven’t been swept for so long they still contain wrappers and papers from long since discontinued products.

    On the scenic side of things when the sun finally appears after the 36 hours of continuous rain, the light sparkles off the crisp bags floating on the rainbow coloured water leaking from the high powered black Audi’s, white BMW’s and Silver Mercedes of the ‘young professionals’ that are ragged round the streets at all hours.

    What a hole, and I live there….

  27. joonasaurus says:

    Bletchley High Street
    Bletchley may be famous for code breaking and Ikea. But if the tourists care to venture off that well beaten path to the local high street they will find a more grim experience. The forlorn 1970s shopping though a fare looking shabby and grim, forgotten and dejected to town centre MK.

    Abusive pissed up locals lounge around on the benches amongst the fag ends and chewing gum spotted pavements and overflowing bins outside Meat World, next to the many betting shops and fast food outlets.

    The covered market offers cheap knockoff fashions, suitcases and usual wolf and dragon themed resin collectibles and dream catchers from China. Along with diamond encrusted belt buckles spelling out “fuck me” just at pushchair height.
    Welcome to Bletchley (not the high st) dot com

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