Cosham, Nr. Portsmouth

Cosham. Situated far too close for comfort to the crumbling council estates of Paulsgrove (of PEDOPHILS OUT (sic) fame) and Wymering (spelt Wyoming by it’s mostly illiterate inhabitants), Cosham is a prime example of what happens to a pleasant suburb of Portsmouth when you surround it with toxic human waste.
After my short stint working for the Job Centre, I found myself forced to take a position with a company in this once charming town. Sadly for me this meant spending every single, solitary lunchtime wandering up and down the high street in an effort to find something to do. However it quickly became apparent that this search would be in vain, unless for some reason I suddenly developed a previously unrealised interest in rummaging through the belongings of the recently departed in one of it’s plethora of charity shops.
But perhaps I am doing Cosham a disservice. Stroll with me now as I lead you through the highs and lows (it has to be said mostly lows) of the Cosham shopping extravaganza.
Starting at the north end of the street, what do we find straight away but those champions of the down at heel shopper, New Look and Iceland.
Legions of legging clad charmers burrowing their way through the bargains to find that perfect outfit for this Saturdays romantic assignation with some bloke down an alley. Then, if there’s any money left from their Income Support, pop next door to stock up on frozen ready meals for the kids.
Moving on we come to the Bingo Hall. Queueing outside, smoking fistfuls of cigarettes are people too old to claim benefit anymore, but who are quite happy to fritter away their pension on an afternoons gambling and then freeze to death in the winter. They will be interspersed with younger members of the community who are on incapacity benefit and can’t work due to back, mental or internal conditions but who can sit all day at a formica topped table crossing numbers off a card and then leaping into the air upon winning.
But let us tear ourselves away and turn 180 degrees to let our gaze fall upon Cosham’s only supermarket. Tesco. Of course. Here we will find an array of the ugliest human beings that nature has dared spew out of it’s womb, all gathered under one roof. They will, of course, be stocking up on No Frills products and fresh produce (beer, ****, Lambrini). Moving swiftly along and bypassing one of Cosham’s four banks (the inhabitants have no need for these or even understand what they are for) we come to the staple of the local ****’s diet, Gregg’s. You are going to need to hold your breath here or risk being rendered unconcious by the almost visible smell of knocked off perfume emanating from the clientele. Having made it to the front of the queue, you too can sample the unthreatening, uncomplicated foodstuffs sold here. Ham, chicken or cheese sandwiches, sausage rolls, doughnuts etc etc. If it’s good enough for little Kineesha and little Tyson then it’s good enough for you.
Are you still holding your breath? Good. Then we must leave. Now we’re outside you should take a few deep breaths. Feeling better? Then we will carry on. Whilst gulping down those lungfuls of air you can’t fail to have noticed that retail cornucopia and shoplifters second home, Woolworths. Venturing in, we find an unsettlingly large amount of customers in long coats, their heads bobbing up and down like startled meercats, who, for now, we will assume are legitimate shoppers and not light fingered pond **** out stealing presents for Christmas. A quick browse along the mobile phone aisle will reveal that there are actually no mobile phones here. All demonstration models have long since been stolen and one can only imagine the disappointment when little Britney-Jade opens her present to find that it consists of a mobile phone with nothing actually inside it. I fear counselling at the tax payers expense may be needed at this point.
Exiting Woolworth’s, without any stolen goods down our trackie bottoms, we pass an Ethel Austin (empty, too expensive and too hard to steal from) on our right hand side and come to the local sandwich shop. As I am a regular customer here and the food is actually really good I will refrain from commenting. Crossing the road, we pass one of two pubs, both of which have a collection of swaying, drunken customers outside, smoking. Not making eye contact, we hurry past. Looking up again we find ourselves outside Poppin’s Cafe. Peering through the steamed up windows you can observe people undertaking that very cornerstone of unemployed dining, making a cup of tea last 4 hours whilst talking very loudly, to anyone who will listen, about their multitude of gastric complaints with accompanying physical evidence.
I know that you will be keen to see what’s next and, as time is pressing, I will hurry the tour along. On your right you will see Peacocks (busy, cheap and easy to steal from) and across the road on your left is Heidi’s Patisserie. This is normally empty due to being expensive, although very nice, and the populace generally being suspicious of the word Patisserie. (It’s foreign or summink, innit?). The remainder of the shopping delights here are too woeful to mention, but as we reach the end of the street we find the Job Centre (like an old friend) and directly opposite you can view what must be the tallest, largest building in Cosham, Roebuck House. Roebuck house is the nerve centre for all Income Support and Incapacity Benefit claims and therefore is also the busiest building in town. The procedure for being seen here appears to be as follows:
1. Take number.
2. Proceed outside building and consume as many cans of Kestrel Extra Strength Lager as you can whilst waiting for your number to be called.
3. Copiously vomit over entrance.
4. Enter building and realise number has been called.
5. Swear blind that you never left building and your number wasn’t called.
6. Threaten everyone in building
7. Vomit again, only this time inside building.
8. Wait for police to arrive, then leave whilst screaming obscenities at anyone who dares look at you.
So there we have it. Maybe I am being a little too harsh on Cosham. I leave it to you, dear reader, to decide for me whether Cosham is simply misunderstood or actually is a puss filled cyst on **** of this country.
However, I will leave you with this thought. Cosham does not even have one bookshop. The reason for this is obvious. Were you foolish enough to open one here, you and your family would, naturally, die of starvation.

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