Havant isn’t very nice.
In the town centre there is a pretty little church, an occasional French market and one or two decent pubs (The Robin Hood and The Old House at Home).
The rest of the area will be familiar to anyone who has nominated or even read about their own town:
1. The bad estate nearby.
In this case it is Leigh Park, already mentioned in a separate article and with good reason, where the streets pound to the rhythms of cars with drainpipe-sized exhausts, while their max-power reading, dead-eyed owners(?) inflict their appalling music tastes on anyone within half a kilometre.
2. The moody town centre pubs.
Havant has many of these – all full of the burberry boys. The obligatory wetherspoons, opposite Macdonalds so that post-stella hunger pangs are taken care of and interestingly one or two pubs home to that compartively rare species: the middle-aged chav.
The street between two of these was the scene of a riot on the evening that England beat Argentina in the last world cup as fat men in their forties who really should know better decided to celebrate the victory by sallying forth and ‘decking’ a few civilians.
3. All the shops are crap
Somehow the centre of Havant manages to sustain a Waitrose. Presumably because there is no other decent supermarket for the more affluent areas to the east until you get to Chichester.
Other than this there are the usual offenders: Wilkinsons, a strange shop that seems to sell a little bit of everything and is a real draw for the chav family unit: foul-mouthed fat f***s in stained trackkie bottoms bellowing abuse at the fruit of their loins.
4. There are many charity shops.
Some of which even have books in. I suspect some of these books may have been there for some time. They may be of interest to antiquarians.
5. Abusive packs of kids aged from 6-16 infest the centre of town.
Walking through the Meridian Centre (an indoor shopping ‘arcade’ that deserves its own entry on this site) one day I saw a little boy decked out in the finest adidas trying to run up the down escalator. Being no more than about 8 he got in trouble, slipped and started bawling like a baby. I picked him up by his arm and asked him if he was okay…
Well I expect you can guess the rest. Suffice to say I’ve been on a night out with a bunch of sailors and I’d still never heard language like it.
Other than this little tyke the town centre was always full of the usual gangs of cap-wearing non-entities all in big groups and all staring meerkat-like in all directions other than at each other.
I wouldn’t know. I don’t go into the town centre any more, other than very early on a Saturday morning to go to Waitrose. It’s quite nice then.
Anyway, these chavs who bit off more than they could chew…
I was out with my flygirl a couple of years ago heading into Havant. A very large man jogged past us.
A few moments later a chavmobile boomed past and a spotty, malnourished face emerged and shouted something along the lines of:
“whatchoo runnin’ for you fu’ing wanga”
The man stuck his finger up at them and instantly became a role model for me.
Predictably the vehicle screeched to a halt and an articulate youth emerged and started doing a strange arm-swinging dance in the man’s direction.
At the same time he enquired if the gent was seeking a physical beating and did he know of a good doctor.
Things happened very quickly after this. The first scumbag got close to this man and received what I can only call a world-class uppercut.
Three others had emerged from the car ready to assist their leader in yet another easy beating and froze at the site of this. The man carried on jogging in a very calm manner in their direction.
The nearest two regained the moral high ground by informing him that he was a ‘c**t’ for ‘chinnin” their friend.
The larger of the two nervously stepped in his way only to be doubled over by an honest to goodness flying kick.
The remaining two gangstas decided they would let him live this time and stepped aside, hurling a bit of predictable abuse when he was about 30 yards away.
Knowing that if we hung around we would receive the beating these lovely lads still had in them we doubled back and laughed all the way home.
Havant – Still Keeping it Real…