Those that haven’t been to Chipping Norton probably imagine it as one of those beautiful Cotswold towns with solid, elegant buildings made of soft honeyed stone. They probably also think of red telephone boxes, bicycling vicars, pretty gardens and cosy pubs. They’d be right too. It gets surprisingly cold in winter, when the wind blasts in direct from Siberia – but otherwise there’s a refreshing lack of concrete, and even more welcome lack of chain stores. Okay, every other shop’s an estate agent, but we also have lots of antique shops, boutiques, an old-fashioned hardware shop, a decent independent bookshop, not to mention a good chippy (geddit?).
So, in plenty of ways, it’s a nice little town. I think I’d even enjoy living here if it weren’t for one thing. Or rather, several hundred of them. The trouble with Chipping Norton is that it’s full of cunts.
The crimes of the Chipping Norton set are well known – but the most galling thing for me is that people here are content to let them get away with it. They like having them nearby. They see the manifest corruption, the the destruction of the NHS, the collapse of the economy, the brown-nosing of Rupert Murdoch and demonisation of anyone that earns less than £100,000 a year and think, “I’m going to vote for that man ” again.
In short, it’s the spiritual home of the malaise gripping the UK. If there are any other Crap Towns in the country, a good deal of the blame must lie with Chipping Norton. It is the cause and karmic repository for their faults. It just has to be number one.