Crook Vegas as it is affectionately referred to is a bleak s**t hole somewhere in County Durham. Pram faced locals descend on the town centre to visit Greggs, Peters or shoplift wares from the ‘Original’ Factory Shop. Many of them reside in the delightful and scenic ‘Gaza Strip’. At weekends the streets are patrolled by rabid, white lightening consuming gangs, many of whom have taken to wearing flat caps and rigger boots and calling themselves the CTC or Crook Town Casuals, perhaps the Crook Town C***s would be more appropriate, or just c***s for short. These youths urinate in a phone box and boot footballs up and down the street, a highlight is going ‘up the back of the doctors’ for a few cans or visiting Ronnies video shop for some kets. Countryside sports such as lamping are popular, along with shooting tramps and burying their remains at local sites of natural beauty such as Kitty’s Wood. The town boasts a scenic picnic area, which doubles as a dogging venue, trees by day, a fat lass’ arse pressed against the windscreen of a rusty Ford Escort by night.
There are few shops, however it has numerous take away outlets and a surprising number of pubs. The Crown or Fraggle Rock is particularly lively on giro day. Standing proudly is the council building or pagoda, the vision was a modern and Japanese influenced stylish administrative centre for the now defunct Wear Valley Council, sadly it looks like a pile of s**t, designed in lego by a retarded pre-school child. The main street, laughably called Hope Street (no f*****g hope more like) may well boast the highest concentration of betting shops in a 20 yard radius. Again, giro day is a busy period. Tanning shops help the women over 40 to maintain a healthy orange glow, with skin the texture of dry, cracked leather. They are easy to identify clacking down the street in 80s stilettos like a group of angry velociraptors.
Economic activity in the town is somewhat limited, although the local ‘fag houses’ stocking a wide range of snide, foreign smokes appear to have combatted the recession effectively. The once weekly market also thrives, particularly the 2 stripe tracky bottom stall and the jeweller does a roaring trade as locals trade in their Elizabeth Duke in time for the man from the provy or shopacheck to collect the next instalment of the substantial debt racked up purchasing a 50″ plasma screen to view Jeremy Kyle or buying there foul-mouthed toddler a Playstation 3.
Genuine citizens need no explanation as to the true identity of the Cheif, Tennis Man or Radio Roo. They refer to places as what used to be… for example the aforementioned Factory Shop- what used to be Presto, Crazy Jakes- what used to be Bob’s Bargain Centre or BBC (a sadly mourned local resource that proudly displayed its range of sex toys and hardcore porn amongst the household cleaning products) and so on and so forth.
Another key local event is Thursday noght Family Planning Clinic, attendance is not advised for the over 15s, as they may be intimidated by the ferral hoards of 14 year olds in tracksuits vociferously demanding clap tests. Since the sad demise of the Rainflower Arcade or ‘Chongers’ there is little in the way of entertainment, perhaps explaining the high teen birth rate and demand on council dwellings.