Famed for it’s Horse racing, posh schools and culture festivals, it appears on the face of it, to be a great place to live with the town’s wealth attributed to these classy industries.
For these reasons it attracts no end of pretentious tw@ts dressed for ‘escaping to the country’ who are utterly predictable from the ‘Disco’ they drive to their cute Joules wellies and the way they promenade around Pitville park with their spaniel/lab/setter like they’re in another century. The town is swarming with these tossers, some of whom have never even seen mud (once).
The festivals are a publicity sham. Tickets for popular events like air-head celebs talk rubbish at the ‘science’ festival get sold first to an exclusive members only group composed largely of independent schools before being offered to ‘the public’. You might get a ticket to see a sales pitch about a vacuum cleaner though.
Same goes for the Panto where the upper half of the theatre regularly gets block-booked to a no name private school so they can check facebook and remind the town folk where they belong.
The ‘lit’ fest is OK because it dilutes the town’s cliched snobs with people of variety with life experience – for a few days at least..
Race week is hell on earth unless you’re a prostitute, drug dealer, bookie or taxi driver. It should be called money laundering week as the event is the one time a year you can hand over a roll of £50 notes, forgetting to name your horse and walking away, and it’s all good! The streets are covered in puke and blood as half of Ireland descends on the town to fight each other.
Violent crime, poverty and drugs are the worst in the county (Source: Centre for cities annual reports and lots of local coppers) but don’t let a few uncomfortable facts get in the way of the ‘spa town’ image or the myth that it’s uglier neighbour Gloucester is ‘where all the criminals are’.
Gloucester vs Cheltenham folklore is most common amongst younger Cheltonians getting on the ladder who need to justify why their seedy flat in Montpellier costs more than a detached 4-bed in a safer, and friendlier, Gloucester suburb.
Cheltenham has one of the largest social housing communities in the country. That’s not posh.
In summary – as posh as a pot noodle.