JANUARY: The furore over the cancellation of the Cheshire East Council Christmas party continues. The party was organised at Robinson’s Brewery, but when festive frolickers arrived they found that the venue had not been properly consulted and the numbers were all wrong. Stepping down, the Christmas Party Committee chairman said: “I’m not being kicked out because I couldn’t organise a celebratory event in a place where they make beer.”
FEBRUARY: It emerges that North Korea is responsible for the repeated failure of the Peel Lane lights, Astbury, having Googled “traffic lights near the Whitehouse” and confused a rural farmhouse with the offices of the president of the United States.
MARCH: Congleton Town Council denies that it failed to follow proper procedure after it pays £274m for a small desk. “We were told this was the best company for the product and offered the best price by the sister of a man who once met a cousin of the former neighbour of the company’s cleaner’s best mate. It’s all above board,” said a spokesman. The council conceded that while it had emerged that the company MD was a Mr S Lucifer, as long as Congletonians could play the best tune ever written on a fiddle, he’d promised not to suck out their souls as part payment.
APRIL: Congleton’s collective soul is saved when it emerges that the title Mr Lucifer was in fact Lord Leo Deen, Duke of Timbersbrook, Arch High Deacon of Cloud End and Baron Macclesfield Canal. He told the Chronicle: “Someone bought me the title High Lord of Pandæmonium for £25 on eBay and it had a nice ring. The one that binds them all, I think.”
MAY: UKIP plays its final election card by announcing plans to return local towns to their medieval roots. A spokesman said: “All this change has done no-one any good. Congleton is going to back to the days when it was just a few houses in a square by the town hall and Sandbach a cluster of huts round some old crosses. We’re buying some diphtheria and smallpox to let loose in the town and all water will come from wells.”
JUNE. The Chronicle is forced to apologise after printing unaltered a proforma Press release that politician <insert name here> was too lazy to fill in. It had been emailed from the (insert name) Party head office and was meant to be amended to appear local and not shameless propaganda. Chronicle spokesman <insert name> said: “This happens all the <insert expletive> time. This week it was <insert name> who was too <insert expletive> lazy but another week it could be <insert name>. They all do it. Vote <insert alleged political bias>.
JULY: Sainsbury announces its new Alsager store will include a ground for Alsager Town FC. The club’s new name will be AFC Alsainger. People who attend matches will be awarded Nectar points.
AUGUST: Plans to charge for parking at Congleton War Memorial come into force, with patients paying £3, doctors and nurses £8.50, and ambulances £23. Pedestrians will pay a £30 fee for crossing hospital land. To enforce the charges, CCTV and guard towers are installed, supplied by North Korea by way of an apology for the Peel Lane lights misunderstanding (see February).
SEPTEMBER: Congleton War Memorial Hospital closes, with health chiefs blaming an “unexpected in drop in demand and severe staffing issues”.
AFC Alsainger lose their first match – for every goal their opponents score they give away another free.
OCTOBER: After Cheshire East Council leader Michael Jones appeals to the new UKIP/Labour coalition Government to abolish Cheshire East and West and create one big county council for Cheshire, minister Hazel Blears mistakenly announces plans for one big housing estate in Cheshire. She later fails to apologise, saying: “What did you expect? I buggered it all up last time by killing off Cheshire county council against everyone’s wishes.”
NOVEMBER: Sandbach is announced as the new repository of Britain’s nuclear waste. A Nuclear Decommissioning Authority spokesman said: “After studying sites across the country, we realised that land next to junction 17 is about as likely to be ever dug up as Cheshire East Council is of finishing its local plan. Compared to sites that might be affected by tectonic forces every 10,000 years, it’s less likely to be disturbed than anywhere else in the country.”
DECEMBER: Coun Paul Bates declines to comment on a story, leaving Chronicle reporters struggling to find anyone to speak to. “It was horrendous. I know how Vietnam vets must feel,” said one. Worse affected was Coun Bates’ arch nemesis Graham Goodwin, who had written a six-page letter commenting on the quotes he expected Coun Bates to give. “This has rocked me to the core,” he said.