If Slough is the unwashed armpit of Berkshire and Langley is the swollen boil on that armpit, then Colnbrook – in that No Man’s Land between Slough, the Green Belt and Heathrow – is the oozing yellow head of puss on the boil.
At first glance it looks so nice. Not quite urban and not quite country, there are still some Tudor and Victorian buildings there, plus some nice semi-detached housing on the high street. It’s also home to the Ostrich Inn, the third oldest pub in Britain. Granted, it’s only a quick car ride to the M25, urban Berkshire and London, but there’s still farmland, horses in the fields and a nice river or two to look at…
Unfortunately, there are also lots of Chavs too. They come in two varieties. One is the local pack of older casual labourers and building site fodder that hang around pubs like the Red Lion and stare menacingly at outsiders, with bare knuckle boxing seen as a nice change of pace. The other is the overspill from Slough’s notorious Britwell Estate. Whole families of Chav Scum get moved here by the Council, and are stashed in places like Crown Meadow and other such rat holes where they’re mostly too deadbeat to buy their own council houses.
And what a mob these Chavs are. Much in the same way that you can take the man out of the pit but not the pit out of the man, so you can’t take the Britwell Estate out of the Chav, even when he’s in Colnbrook. They’re still young – around 15 to 18 – and dress in the same attire of Chav Scum across the UK. For the males, it’s Burberry, tracksuits and trainers, plus vertical lines shaved in their eyebrows. Most of the females dress in JJB crap too, plus crap perms, plucked-out eyebrows and trash jewellery. All have this sort of stooped, bandy-legged walk of the chronically dodgy and unhealthy. You can spot them a mile off – it’s as if they want you to know they’re scum.
And what do these Chavs do? Wander about and cause trouble. Throw stones and swear at passers-by. Hang about outside the local shops and abuse those who look a bit foreign or normal. Get into fights or try to cause them, sometimes on buses. Burgle the local offices. The usual.
The local rozzers can’t do sod all because: a. they’re crap. b. The little shits stay in touch via mobile phones and so know when to scatter when the cops near. c. The Chavs all dress the same and have the same emaciated and ugly look about them, making identification hard. And d. Thames Valley Constabulary is desperately under-manned anyway. Only one PC is assigned to Colnbrook and he’s lucky if he can even patrol there by car once a day.
It’s ironic you get this sort of urban pox in such a nice, leafy place. Perhaps Slaaaaargh council thought it would be a good idea to ship out some of its dirtbags to the nearest equivalent to countryside it had. Perhaps a bit of country air would make these no doubt ‘troubled’ families with clear ‘special needs’ into decent human beings? Not a chance. And when they get the chance, the Chavs just travel to the urban grot of Slough or Langley – their natural habitats – to cause trouble there. Colnbrook has had no effect on the Chavs, but the Chavs are slowly having an effect on Colnbrook. It is increasingly less and less a good choice to live in, pleasant fields and horses or no pleasant fields and horses.