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On 6/18/2023 at 5:54 AM, Anti Facts Sir said:

Yes, one shop I was in a few days ago had a huge banner with this stuff on it. I suppose they want to be seen to buy into it all so as not to cause a media backlash or have some touchy soul posting on twitter how offended they are that so-and-so company does not support the BLTQPR community. It's the new "elf and safety".

I wonder if they would carry on like that if the majority of people that came into the shop told the management where they could insert their rainbow and alphabet

I would say most people would see something like that and roll their eyes but say nothing,so they only have them selves to blame in my opinion

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On 7/30/2023 at 3:30 AM, BossCrow said:

I remember this De Zoysa story when it happened. doesn't make any sense he'd be arrested, cuffed and cops didn't spot the gun (they claim it was concealed in his armpit 🤣. Then he's conveniently brain damaged during the incident so he can't speak/defend himself in court. Mind-controlled patsy? I see they released edited/cropped footage of the incident now but it's not conclusive evidence. Gun could have been loaded with blanks.

 

I was going to start a thread on this story, right after it all happened. It just all felt wrong to me. So bizarre.

 

 

 

On 8/2/2023 at 8:47 PM, Anti Facts Sir said:

Killing off small businesses and independent traders. And hobbyists. It's been going on for years, started by Amazon closing the accounts of small sellers (basically people trying to make a bit of money from their collectables), and now it's going up a notch or two. Endgame: corporations only.

 

I was glad to hear that enough folks kicked off to at least force a climbdown of sorts.

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On 8/2/2023 at 8:47 PM, Anti Facts Sir said:

Killing off small businesses and independent traders. And hobbyists.

 

It's been going on for years, started by Amazon closing the accounts of small sellers (basically people trying to make a bit of money from their collectables), and now it's going up a notch or two. Endgame: corporations only.

 

Amazon is not a place for small 'hobby' sellers any more. Yes, they may have their 'Amazon Handmade' section, aimed at the crafters who make and sell on Etsy, but you still have to pay a monthly fee as well as commission on sales, plus you are beholden to all of Amazon's 'policies' and rules.

 

Amazon is moving towards having 'big brands' selling their products direct to consumers, or via 'approved distributors', gone are the days when you could pick up a job lot of Tefal toasters or kettles and sell them on Amazon - if you're not a recognised Tefal distributor (ie you buy direct from Tefal themselves), then you'll find yourself in all sorts of trouble.

 

eBay is also making moves towards the same goal, encouraging brands and manufacturers to sell their products direct to consumers.

 

Its all about bypassing the traditional retail and distribution channels.

 

For example, Brand makes a Product. Brand sells this Product to distributors for £50, for which they enjoy a decent profit margin (otherwise it wouldn't be worthwhile!).

 

Distributors then sell Product to wholesalers for £60, who then sell to retailers/stores for £70. Retailers then sell this Product to consumers for £95. With the RRP (recommended retail price) set at £110, shoppers think they are getting a bargain.

 

Everyone down the chain makes money. Now imagine the possibilities if Brand were able to sell this Product direct to shoppers for £95!

 

Of course, by bypassing the traditional distribition/retail model, Brand could actually sell this product direct to consumers at a lower price in theory, say £85. With the current 'cost of living crisis' this could be spun as being 'good' for consumers.

 

That is another way that retail stores will be forced out of business. Why buy a Braun razor from Wilko or Argos for £75, when you can buy it direct from Braun for £65?

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2 hours ago, Grumpy Owl said:

 

Amazon is not a place for small 'hobby' sellers any more. Yes, they may have their 'Amazon Handmade' section, aimed at the crafters who make and sell on Etsy, but you still have to pay a monthly fee as well as commission on sales, plus you are beholden to all of Amazon's 'policies' and rules.

 

Amazon is moving towards having 'big brands' selling their products direct to consumers, or via 'approved distributors', gone are the days when you could pick up a job lot of Tefal toasters or kettles and sell them on Amazon - if you're not a recognised Tefal distributor (ie you buy direct from Tefal themselves), then you'll find yourself in all sorts of trouble.

 

eBay is also making moves towards the same goal, encouraging brands and manufacturers to sell their products direct to consumers.

 

Its all about bypassing the traditional retail and distribution channels.

 

For example, Brand makes a Product. Brand sells this Product to distributors for £50, for which they enjoy a decent profit margin (otherwise it wouldn't be worthwhile!).

 

Distributors then sell Product to wholesalers for £60, who then sell to retailers/stores for £70. Retailers then sell this Product to consumers for £95. With the RRP (recommended retail price) set at £110, shoppers think they are getting a bargain.

 

Everyone down the chain makes money. Now imagine the possibilities if Brand were able to sell this Product direct to shoppers for £95!

 

Of course, by bypassing the traditional distribition/retail model, Brand could actually sell this product direct to consumers at a lower price in theory, say £85. With the current 'cost of living crisis' this could be spun as being 'good' for consumers.

 

That is another way that retail stores will be forced out of business. Why buy a Braun razor from Wilko or Argos for £75, when you can buy it direct from Braun for £65?

Funny you say this. Hornby is also now selling direct to customers trying to avoid shops so i believe. I find this really nasty because if it wasnt for all the little model train shops in the first place Hornby would of been gone.What a stab in the back for all the small shops.

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https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-london-66404342

 

Re The tribunal of the met police commander, one of the witnesses calls him a reptilian (as well as being a drug user). Seems an odd thing to include by the bbc, possibly to ridicule the witness.  But generally, he has been on full pay for 3 years while they investigate if he is a drug user as he refused a drug test.... 🤔 there is obviously an agenda of turning the public against the police but these tribunals or criminal matters going through the courts are actually happening at what seems like a disproportionate rate. 

 

any lack of respect for the police, as some individual officers do still care and do a good job, is obviously going to increase with the frequency and reporting of these sort of stories. A lot of them also don't care tho and are literally just on a countdown to retirement and pension age, or are actually soulless and heartless individuals using their power often against the most vulnerable.  Be interesting to see how it pans out and surely the police must be having massive recruitment problems at this point. (There are multiple stories about recruitment issues and a lack of vetting) 

 

https://www.theguardian.com/uk-news/2022/mar/10/major-shortcomings-in-england-and-wales-policing-persist-watchdog-says

 

Crime has to keep going up with the cost of living "crisis" as well.  

 

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11 hours ago, Captainlove said:

Funny you say this. Hornby is also now selling direct to customers trying to avoid shops so i believe. I find this really nasty because if it wasnt for all the little model train shops in the first place Hornby would of been gone.What a stab in the back for all the small shops.

Funny old world ennit? How many thousands of kids must have looked longingly at those model trains knowing that although they couldn't afford one there and then, they would one day be a grown up with some spare cash and they could perhaps afford one then?🤔 I wonder whatever happened to my old anorak? Seriously though any steam train fan will probably know of the 'Lickey Incline'lickeyincline.jpg.a820d73210b157883d731f5a7ba119fd.jpg 

the steepest incline in the midlands. 

Us kids used to walk there with an old wooden box on a pushchair chassis and collect the coal that fell alongside the tracks as the trains went up the gradient, a round journey of six or so miles, health and safety? fuck off!😉

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1 hour ago, Mr Crabtree said:

Funny old world ennit? How many thousands of kids must have looked longingly at those model trains knowing that although they couldn't afford one there and then, they would one day be a grown up with some spare cash and they could perhaps afford one then?🤔 I wonder whatever happened to my old anorak? Seriously though any steam train fan will probably know of the 'Lickey Incline'lickeyincline.jpg.a820d73210b157883d731f5a7ba119fd.jpg 

the steepest incline in the midlands. 

Us kids used to walk there with an old wooden box on a pushchair chassis and collect the coal that fell alongside the tracks as the trains went up the gradient, a round journey of six or so miles, health and safety? fuck off!😉

Went there once yes its very steep. They use to bank engines to push up the hill.

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16 hours ago, Grumpy Owl said:

Amazon is not a place for small 'hobby' sellers any more. Yes, they may have their 'Amazon Handmade' section, aimed at the crafters who make and sell on Etsy, but you still have to pay a monthly fee as well as commission on sales, plus you are beholden to all of Amazon's 'policies' and rules.

 

It's obvious really when you think how much profit they make. I do use internet shopping for physical stuff I can touch and own properly, but I don't do streaming, e-books etc where I don't control the product. For example, if I buy a book on a kindle or e-reader, or a streaming music album, how do I sell it on second hand when I've finished with it? How do I donate it to my local charity shop? No, everyone else has to buy "new" from the rich internet companies and person-to-person selling is stopped. Isn't it, or am I missing something here?

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I can think of one thing not mentioned here:

 

What has gone wrong at Wilko?

Quote

Although the brand is beloved by Brits, Richard Lim, boss of the Retail Economics consultancy, said: "Sadly, sentiment doesn't ensure commercial success."

Wilko stepped into the High Street gap left by the collapse of Woolworths in late 2008, but has struggled over the past decade partly due to growing competition from the likes of Poundland and B&M.

Wilko's sales were larger than B&M's a decade ago, but now they are one-third of its competitor's. Its sales have also fallen below Poundland, Home Bargains, and The Range.

Some analysts have pointed out that rivals seem to offer similar goods at lower prices.

"The competition is a lot more fierce in non-food now, particularly in the discounted bit of the market, compared to five years ago," said Mr Lim.

from: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-66394238

 

I used to enjoy shopping at Wilko, but one thing that puts me off now is that in the two bigger stores near me, they've closed off the checkouts and replaced them with those damn 'self-service' set ups, which can be awkward to use, especially if you have more than a handful of items.

 

B&M still have staffed checkouts, there's a hint as to why they are doing better than Wilko now...

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1 hour ago, EnigmaticWorld said:

 

Just increasing it on Sundays to affect one religion, but not for the other religions which meet on Fridays and Saturdays? They're making their agenda a bit obvious aren't they?

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9 hours ago, Campion said:

 

It's obvious really when you think how much profit they make. I do use internet shopping for physical stuff I can touch and own properly, but I don't do streaming, e-books etc where I don't control the product. For example, if I buy a book on a kindle or e-reader, or a streaming music album, how do I sell it on second hand when I've finished with it? How do I donate it to my local charity shop? No, everyone else has to buy "new" from the rich internet companies and person-to-person selling is stopped. Isn't it, or am I missing something here?

I guess you never used facebook selling.Plenty of people selling old items on there.

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7 hours ago, Grumpy Owl said:

I can think of one thing not mentioned here:

 

What has gone wrong at Wilko?

from: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/business-66394238

 

I used to enjoy shopping at Wilko, but one thing that puts me off now is that in the two bigger stores near me, they've closed off the checkouts and replaced them with those damn 'self-service' set ups, which can be awkward to use, especially if you have more than a handful of items.

 

B&M still have staffed checkouts, there's a hint as to why they are doing better than Wilko now...

Our Wilko still has staffed checkouts but it has some self service ones too (it's only a small shop). No B&M nearby, but there is a Home Bargain - staffed checkouts only there - but they don't sell paint etc and very few tools. 

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Definitely not suspicious?

 

First of all, from just last week:

'A great shame' as Crooked House pub set to be redeveloped for 'other use'

 

Quote

Landmark Black Country pub The Crooked House has been sold for alternative use and is unlikely to open its doors to drinkers again.

According to a post on the Stourbridge and Halesowen CAMRA page by the current landlord, the building in Himley, which has been there since 1765 has been sold by owners Marston's.

The quirky building, which suffered mining subsidence but was made structurally safe in the 1940s, was once dubbed 'Britain's wonkiest pub' and in its heyday attracted drinkers from across the globe. It stands in an isolated location, close to Himley just off the B4176 and is reached down a long gravel track.

It was famed for being the place where coins and marbles seemingly rolled uphill along the bar but the iconic former farmhouse was listed for sale earlier this year, with a guide price of £675,000, one of 61 pubs being sold off by the Marston's group.

A Marston's spokesman said: "“We are pleased to confirm the sale of The Crooked House has now completed. At this stage we’re unable to disclose any details on the buyer or price.”

from: https://www.expressandstar.com/news/local-hubs/dudley/2023/07/28/historic-himley-pub-set-to-be-re-developed/

 

image.jpeg.be43f5f1afb58eb3d0f0856ffc4beff4.jpeg

 

Then this morning:

Fire engulfs The Crooked House pub - flames and smoke seen pouring out of iconic building

Quote

A photo posted on Facebook showed the famous venue ablaze late on Saturday, with flames and smoke pouring out of the 18th century building.

Staffordshire Fire & Rescue Service said the call came in at 10pm. Six crews from both Staffordshire and West Midlands Fire Service were at the scene.

Ash Smith witnessed the blaze and called the fire service. He told the Express & Star: "I went up to my yard to check on my horses and could see a lot of smoke coming from the area of The Crooked House so we drove closer to have a look and could see that it was on fire."

He added that the lane up to the pub off Himley Road between Dudley and Himley had been blocked, leaving firefighters unable to get their vehicles up close to the blaze.

The Crooked House has been a Grade II listed building since 1960.

from: https://www.expressandstar.com/news/local-hubs/dudley/2023/08/06/fire-engulfs-the-crooked-house-pub---flames-and-smoke-seen-pouring-out-of-iconic-building/

 

My emphasis in bold.

 

I wonder if the new owner took out insurance? 🤔

 

I understand it can be challenging to get planning permission for alterations/extensions to listed buildings.

 

The next interesting question to be answered is who pays for the rest of the demolition...

 

Also, I'll be curious to see what the new owners build there instead...

Edited by Grumpy Owl
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One of those stories that make you go "eh?" 🤔

 

Bridgnorth mayor pushes for better street lighting after man suffers 'appalling' homophobic abuse

Quote

Last weekend, Huw Rees of Bridgnorth was subjected to verbal attacks after leaving the town's Majestic cinema in Whitburn Street following a screening of Barbie.

The 24-year-old said: "As has become part of the custom of seeing the film, I was dressed fully in pink.

"Unfortunately, as I left the cinema and walked through town in the dark, I was verbally assaulted four separate times with homophobic slurs aimed at me by pub-goers, both men and women.

"I also had a pint glass thrown in my direction which thankfully missed but smashed in front of me on the pavement."

Mayor of Bridgnorth Rachel Connolly, who also represents the town at Shropshire Council for the Labour party, said: "I was appalled to hear of the abuse that Mr Rees was subject to.

"Nobody should face such abuse and everyone has the right to feel safe when waking around Bridgnorth, and I am sorry that this has happened."

 

She added that after Mr Rees pointed out the lack of street lighting in the town, which made some areas "terrifying" to walk down, she said she has raised the issue at Shropshire Council.

from: https://www.expressandstar.com/news/local-hubs/shropshire/bridgnorth/2023/08/06/towns-mayor-appalled-following-homophobic-abuse/

 

Gay man walks around dressed in pink after watching the 'Barbie' movie, and gets a few slurs thrown at him.

 

But this wouldn't have happened if there was better street lighting? 😛

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13 hours ago, Captainlove said:

I guess you never used facebook selling.Plenty of people selling old items on there.

 

No I just use FB for keeping in touch with family & friends. I'm vaguely aware of the selling function, but can you sell stuff like old ebooks and amazon prime films? I could understand if I've download a pdf or mp3/4 etc which I can email across. I guess I've reached my limit of tec knowledge when it gets too much bother!!

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2 hours ago, Grumpy Owl said:

Definitely not suspicious?

 

First of all, from just last week:

'A great shame' as Crooked House pub set to be redeveloped for 'other use'

 

from: https://www.expressandstar.com/news/local-hubs/dudley/2023/07/28/historic-himley-pub-set-to-be-re-developed/

 

image.jpeg.be43f5f1afb58eb3d0f0856ffc4beff4.jpeg

 

Then this morning:

Fire engulfs The Crooked House pub - flames and smoke seen pouring out of iconic building

from: https://www.expressandstar.com/news/local-hubs/dudley/2023/08/06/fire-engulfs-the-crooked-house-pub---flames-and-smoke-seen-pouring-out-of-iconic-building/

 

My emphasis in bold.

 

I wonder if the new owner took out insurance? 🤔

 

I understand it can be challenging to get planning permission for alterations/extensions to listed buildings.

 

The next interesting question to be answered is who pays for the rest of the demolition...

 

Also, I'll be curious to see what the new owners build there instead...

Gosh, what an incredible....coincidence.

 

Intact all those hundreds of years and then soon as it's snapped up by developers it burns down.

 

Baffling....

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11 hours ago, Anti Facts Sir said:

Gosh, what an incredible....coincidence.

 

Intact all those hundreds of years and then soon as it's snapped up by developers it burns down.

 

Baffling....

Maybe, just maybe, it's not just the pub that's crooked, nudge, nudge, wink, wink, 'eh, 'eh!🤫🤔 There is another quirky pub called the Mug House that stands  in the churchyard of Claines church in Worcester, supposedly haunted, but then again, why not? they do serve spirits as well as ale!🤭

mug1.jpg.89f31c4bd966cd95168ec5b96ac5c84b.jpgmug2.jpg.754145bb6fb5593d054ba2999a71e5be.jpgmug3.jpg.a6e74274902c28002598e017b8e41b78.jpg

In the seventies, yes I know that was a long time ago, but me and a couple of mates used to have a pint in there then move on to the Bank house Inn in Bransford near Worcester for the Friday night disco which included in the entry fee 'Chicken in the basket'! About midnight, if we were lucky, we left with some young lady of horizontal refreshment who was absolutely gorgeous thanks to the 'beer goggles' that made them turn into a creature that was eight pints beautiful!🤔 Well, until you woke up the next morning, then it was a different person lying there next to you than the one you imagined her to be the night before!🥴 The landlord was a man called Eddie Jones who was also a martial arts instructor and he didn't take any silliness from the punters, his only rule was 'behave yourself or fuck off'! Today the Bank House is a Hotel spa golf and country club, poor old Eddie would turn in his grave, he ran a tight ship, but there was always the chance for a good time and a good laugh too!

bankhouse.jpg.bd597986dc8c62c059be10bf6f001121.jpg

The Bank House today has really gone upmarket!

Edited by Mr Crabtree
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NatWest has granted itself “sweeping new powers” to limit cash deposits and withdrawals, fuelling warnings that banks are forcing customers towards a “cashless society”.

 

The high-street bank has told current account holders it is bringing in new conditions “giving us the right to set limits on inbound and outbound payments”.

 

In a leaflet it said that could include imposing “daily and annual” cash withdrawal and deposit limits and “limiting the amount of cash” paid in or taken out.

 

The move has raised fears that increasing curbs on the use of paper money across the system could have negative consequences for consumers.

 

It comes amid a wider scandal over “de-banking” after Nigel Farage revealed that Coutts – which is owned by NatWest Group – had closed his account because it disagreed with his political views.

 

NatWest said it was making the change to “protect our customers from the risk of fraud” and that it was nothing to do with limiting customers’ access to cash. Banks have been told to do more to tackle financial crime by the City watchdog.

 

Mr Farage said it was “deeply worrying that banks are now granting themselves sweeping powers to limit their customers’ use of cash”.

 

“The wider de-banking scandal I have uncovered has already demonstrated that banks cannot be trusted to wield such power responsibly, given the way they have closed people’s accounts purely because of the political views they hold,” he told The Telegraph.

 

“There will now naturally be fears that customers who fall foul of the corporate thought police could see their access to cash cut off. Jeremy Hunt must act swiftly to make sure that this cannot happen and that legal tender remains legal tender.”

 

Tomorrow begins today’


NatWest announced the changes in a leaflet first sent in June, entitled “tomorrow begins today”, advising customers of changes to their terms and conditions.

 

The new rules, which come into force on Sept 11, state that: “We may apply limits to payments to and from your account, for example, to the amount of cash you pay in or withdraw, or to payment types where there is a high risk of fraud, scams or other crimes.”

 

Anne-Marie Morris, a Tory MP who sits on the Commons treasury committee, added: “We should not be moving to a cashless society without consumer consultation and consent.

 

“Of course we must ensure money laundering is not allowed to flourish. But there is a balance and society cannot just be deprived of cash because it suits banks and regulators.

“The fraud and money-laundering rules seem to be wagging the tail of the cash dog.”

 

Daily caps


Most banks impose daily caps on how much cash customers can take out of ATMs and the amount they can transfer out of their account in one go to protect them from fraud.

 

NatWest allows current account holders to take up to £750 out from a cash machine, or up to £20,000 out of a branch without notifying their branch in advance.

 

It has insisted that it is fully committed to access to cash, pointing out it has introduced measures such as a scheme to post cash directly to vulnerable customers.

 

Many banks have also brought in limits on how much cash can be deposited at the Post Office and in cash-deposit machines to combat money laundering.

 

Martin Kearsley, the banking director at the Post Office, says the limits have had “a significant impact on legitimate customers being turned away, unable to do their transactions”.

 

MPs have raised concerns that bank branch closures and businesses preferring card payments are leaving cash users behind.

Cash is disproportionately used by more vulnerable members of society, including the elderly and the lowest paid, who find it easier to budget using physical money. 

 

A poll of voters in Red Wall constituencies on Sunday revealed that eight in 10 believe that customers should have a legal right to pay with cash in shops. One in five now said it was “hard” or “very hard” to pay for goods and services with paper money rather than using a card.

 

Rishi Sunak said on Tuesday that “people still need access to their cash”, highlighting new laws passed earlier this year to guarantee “reasonable access” for withdrawal and deposit facilities.   

The Financial Conduct Authority has been given powers to oversee the new rules, including putting limits on how far people have to travel to get their money.

 

But the Prime Minister has rebuffed calls from Tory MPs to force businesses to accept notes and coins, saying they “should be able to choose the forms of payment that they will accept”.

 

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11 hours ago, Nemo said:

The high-street bank has told current account holders it is bringing in new conditions “giving us the right to set limits on inbound and outbound payments”.

 

In a leaflet it said that could include imposing “daily and annual” cash withdrawal and deposit limits and “limiting the amount of cash” paid in or taken out.

 

The move has raised fears that increasing curbs on the use of paper money across the system could have negative consequences for consumers.

 

It comes amid a wider scandal over “de-banking” after Nigel Farage revealed that Coutts – which is owned by NatWest Group – had closed his account because it disagreed with his political views.

 

I still don't trust Farage, and I'm pretty sure that whatever he is up to will lead to negative consequences for everyone. (Apart from his big hedge-fund investor buddies who will no doubt make a huge profit somehow)

 

I will start getting nervous if he starts encouraging people to withdraw huge sums of money in cash from their accounts.

 

We've seen this before, in places like Greece and Cyprus, where panicing people cause a 'run on the banks' and it never ends well.

 

Some banks will collapse, and maybe that's the intention - kill off the smaller banks, leaving just the 'big boys' in control.

 

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On 8/6/2023 at 9:37 AM, Grumpy Owl said:

Definitely not suspicious?

 

First of all, from just last week:

'A great shame' as Crooked House pub set to be redeveloped for 'other use'

 

from: https://www.expressandstar.com/news/local-hubs/dudley/2023/07/28/historic-himley-pub-set-to-be-re-developed/

 

image.jpeg.be43f5f1afb58eb3d0f0856ffc4beff4.jpeg

 

Then this morning:

Fire engulfs The Crooked House pub - flames and smoke seen pouring out of iconic building

from: https://www.expressandstar.com/news/local-hubs/dudley/2023/08/06/fire-engulfs-the-crooked-house-pub---flames-and-smoke-seen-pouring-out-of-iconic-building/

 

My emphasis in bold.

 

I wonder if the new owner took out insurance? 🤔

 

I understand it can be challenging to get planning permission for alterations/extensions to listed buildings.

 

The next interesting question to be answered is who pays for the rest of the demolition...

 

Also, I'll be curious to see what the new owners build there instead...

 

Didn't take them long to demolish it :classic_ohmy:

 

 

 

https://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-12382535/Britains-wonkiest-pub-flattened-devastating-fire-tore-18th-century-boozer.html

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