Penzance used to be a rather pleasant, hard-working resort town whose populace comprised of hippy dope smokers, fisherfolk, artists, and local workers in the tourist shops, care homes and light industrial units. Nothing special, but a place where you could wander (bare foot if you liked) without fear of stepping in vomit, broken breezer bottles held together with the label, or chewing gum.
Then our council introduced the policy of adopting ‘problem families’ from less happy towns in exchange for cash.
Walk through Penzance now on a typical monday morning (when people should be at work!) and you’d be forgiven for thinking that the Olympics had come to town, so extensive is the human sea of branded sportswear.
Everyone is warming up for their own chosen event, whether it be the hundred meter triple pushchair fag dash or the H Samuel sponsored jewellry wearing endurance event.
I live in a direct line between the town’s premier ‘nitespot’, Club 2k, and the Treneere Housing Estate, and most nights I can’t sleep for the Chav social activity in the street below: A gang of lads pretending to ‘bum’ another lad as they grunt and shout ‘Liam’s got spunk on his trousers'; A gaggle of sexually aggressive, thong-wearing 14 year old chavettes, pissed up on Merrydown, taunting a Westie-walking pensioner about the size of his dog’s cock; And an endlessly repeated 3am Bacardi assisted Relate session that begins with the remorseful, ‘But I love ya Kim, you know that’, and finishes with Kim beaten black and blue and then screaming abuse at the police who are trying to arrest ‘My Kriss!’
The semi-precious jewel in the chav crown has to be a bar called The Sports Cue (now wittily updated S.C.U.K); here, a sub-species of muscle vested kappa-capped townies chat up gold hooped schoolgirls to the accompaniment of revving Saxo engines.
I can report from the far west that The Invasion is complete.