Friday, April 08, 2005

“Longbridge and the whole of the West Midlands are becoming ghost towns”

Originally posted by The Realist

It’s not something to be happy about, but it’s true. The last, British-owned car manufacturers is going belly up. It’s going to devastate the region – believe me, it’s where I grew up and I know how reliant the area is on that factory. The irony of all of this is that here in London, I am begging talented people to work for my company – we have to have books about keeping people! It’s impossible and (oh, how the Daily Mail would love this!) we’re having to recruit abroad.

This irony has focussed my mind on the differences between London and the rest of this country. I’m feeling rather metropolitan and elitist today, so I’ll let you into a little secret. It’s something that we usually try to keep quiet and it’s something you won’t want to believe:

Everything that excels naturally gravitates towards London.

If you live in the provinces, your life will be meaningless. There is no exaggeration – it will be entirely meaningless. Made a big sale at your company today? Whoop-de-fucking-doo. Nothing you ever do will ever be recognised outside of your area and your only legacy will be the brats your provincial wives excrete. Oh, and I’ve seen your children – bouncing up and down on burnt out cars in Nottingham.

You hate London? Why is that? Let me guess - your perception of London is:

The West End
Posh types
Rude people
Cockney football fans

You’re wrong of course, but we don’t tell you too often, because we don’t want most of you here. So please, by all means, stay outside of Zone 4. You can expect at least some of the following:

Green areas
A house rather than a flat
A car

If having a better Rover than the Rover of the people in the identikit house next to yours is the thing that makes you go to sleep with a smile on your face, good luck to you!

Also bear in mind that your only options are to work in the bloated public sector (which is going to be decimated whoever wins the election), a call centre, a foreign owned factory or the regional office of a proper company.

If, however, you excel at something, come and join the party.


Anonymous said...

Its not suprising you have problems keeping staff

The Realist said...

I don't mean me - I don't recruit people. I mean 'key talent' in top companies.

Anonymous said...

And where do you come from...?

The Realist said...

Re-read the post and have a wild guess.

Anonymous said...

Spot on - London is critcised far too often, mainly by people who have an inferiority complex about it - so they try and list these supposed 'disadvantages'.

Anonymous said...

Don't forget all the bloody Australians.

Anonymous said...

Who's got the inferiority complex?
Seat of Parliament aside, London is as irrelevant to the 50 Million Brits who don't live in and around it than "the provinces" are to the capital-dwellers.

Well done you for gravitating downwards, especially if it makes feel like you've "Excelled". But I think the ex-midlander doth protest too much.

The Realist said...

No, you’re wrong and let me explain why that is the case. You incorrectly assert that London is irrelevant (Seat of Parliament aside) when this is clearly not the case. London is the centre of; film, music, industry, finance, politics, advertising, tourism, culture - everything you do, see, digest, read and hear originates here. How can it be irrelevant to you when it permeates every action of your every waking hour? Nothing that people in ‘the provinces’ does affects me. With the possible exception of ensuring that my taxes aren’t spent where I live.

This affects everything from SM:TV being cancelled because international stars wouldn’t venture away from the capital, to The Beatles (albeit reluctantly) relocating to London because ‘It would be impossible to operate elsewhere’ to Pebble Mill closing down, to Rover going bust, to the (increasing) domination of wealthy London football club, etc. ad infinitum.

Next time you watch tv, think about what you’re watching. You’re watching actors who live in London acting in a show dreamt up by London people in London. The show will be made in London, marketed by people who live in London paid for by the London-designed adverts of London-based companies.

Unless you’re watching a re-run of Jossy’s Giants. And that really is irrelevant.

Citizen Sane said...

And let's not forget the most damning evidence of all: we all remember when This Morning With Richard & Judy quit its location on the Liverpool docks to re-camp in London. What stronger example could you need???

sparx said...

Just to ensure journalistic integrity and to be an insufferable smart-arse, MG Rover is not the last british owned car manufacturer. Just the last mass-producing one.
Not much consolation to the people of Longbridge though.

Anonymous said...

Nothing that people in ‘the provinces’ does affects me.

Not being from England, I really am curious about this. How do the Londoners manage to find all that space for agriculture? Or do they just not eat?

Anonymous said...

Jossy's Giants! Was never much of a fan.

I hear you, I also fled the Midlands. But I would rather have died than get sucked into the grey miserableness of the capital (as I watched so many of my friends do) so I left the country. I still get BBC Prime-So- according to your TV theory: Yes re Eastenders and TOTP, but a resounding NO re Doctors, Holby City, Casualty, old Liza Tarbuck vehicle, Monarch of the Glen, something about Rock Climbers in Scotland? (they really spoil us) Even the kids programs are all Scottish. And the daily dose of antique/house/pet shows run around all over the Green and Pleasant Land. Sorry. But it seems that YOU are wrong. For once!

Am I taking you a little too seriously? If so- next time you use the loo, take a moment to think exactly where you would be without the provinces you so decry...

PP (still think you are protesting too much)