April 20, 2015

THIS! IS! YORKSHIRE! That’s what we’ve been bellowing in the Bankstone News office all morning. We do this every April 20th to celebrate the date on which the immortal Brighouse 300 held off an entire army of Lancastrian raiders at the battle of Greetland Gap.

But this year we have another reason for celebrating the number 300. Today sees the publication of the 300th edition of Bankstone News!

Imagine that: 300 hundred emailed compendia of four or five lovingly hand-crafted stories issued at vaguely weekly intervals since almost before time itself began. All the way down through the years, Bankstone News has shone as a beacon of truth and fair play in a world of fork-tongued fudge and falsity, bringing you the news that matters, when it matters, in a 110% matter-oriented way.

Back in 1999, when the first edition of Bankstone News appeared, Harold McMillan was prime minister, a loaf of bread cost just 999, Barnsley man Derek Stent came within ten places of clinching Eurovision qualification with his unforgettable I’m the Wang-a-Bang-Bang Man, decimalisation brought boom times for the Coin Recognition Automatic Payment maintenance and repair sector, and Andrew Ridgeley published his acclaimed autobiography Wasting Time with Some Creepy Guy.

To give you some idea of the true scale of the achievement represented by 300 editions of Bankstone News, we spent a couple of hours with our calculating machines to work out that four or five stories a week over 300 weekly editions amounts to 1500 stories of around 300 words each, giving a grand total of just under half a million handpicked and carefully arranged words (many of them spelled correctly).

Half a million words makes Bankstone News more or less the same length as Len Tolstoy’s War & Peace and half as long as Alain Prost’s epic Looking for Lost Time, the longest novel ever written. And how much would you learn about motor insurance claims from ploughing your way through either of those, Bankstone News would like to know!

So keep it tuned to Bankstone News, Dear Readers, and soon when some ponce asks if you’ve read Prost you can come back with: “No, but I’ve read something that’s longer and more interesting and has way more cars and bikes and stuff in it.”

And, as if we didn’t already have enough reasons for celebrating today, it’s also Bankstone kingpin Dicksock Tightson’s Birthday this week. If he were 25 we could stick 300 candles on his cake, one for each month. If he was 75 we could have a candle for each season. But boringly, he isn’t. He’s 49. Again.

So Happy Birthday Dicko! Happy Anniversary Bankstone News! And may the mighty fallen of Greetland Gap never be forgotten!


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