Shropshire Star

Mark Andrews: Cops, Cop 27, the John Lewis ad and the real reason for cinema's closure

Mark Andrews takes a wry look at the week that was.

What does the new John Lewis advert say to you?

The nation was enraged this summer when a video clip emerged of a Hertfordshire Police officer addressing Loctite loons on the M25, asking if they needed any assistance.

This week the force showed its determination not to see a repeat of such bad publicity, with officers taking a tough, no-holds barred approach.

So what did they do? Turn up mob-handed, and forcibly clear the road before any major disruption was caused? Er, no. They nicked a journalist for reporting on it.

Just Stop Oil protests bringing roads to a standstill

LBC reporter Charlotte Lynch was searched, handcuffed and held in the cells for five hours. She had DNA swabs taken from her mouth, her fingerprints taken, and her mugshot photographed. Nobody has said what will happen to this information, I sincerely hope it is not quietly stored on police files. The force's police and crime commissioner, David Lloyd, blamed the media for its coverage.

That's 21st century Britain for you. Soft on crime, tough on the reporting of crime.

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Rishi Sunak addressing Cop 27. What did he say exactly?

Rishi Sunak bowed to intense public pressure and flew into Egypt on Monday to deliver a few minutes of platitudes at Cop 27. And five days later, who can remember what he said? Something about Britain becoming a clean-air superpower? Well worth the carbon footprint of the journey.

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Meanwhile Sophia Kianni, a 20-year-old student who has somehow ended up advising the United Nations on climate change, is concerned that most scientific literature is only available in English, a language spoken by just 25 per cent of the world.

I share her outrage. It is a disgrace that in 2022, three quarters of the world's population still don't speak English.

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What must she be thinking?

John Lewis's hotly anticipated – at least by Guardian writers – Christmas advert features a bearded, pot-bellied, middle-aged man learning to ride a skateboard in preparation for taking in a teenage foster child.

No doubt, the company's slick, hard-nosed PR types thought it would tug at the heart strings, and make people spend all their money with this warm, touchy-feely retailer.

Whereas I just wondered what was going through the poor foster-child's mind. Something like: "Haven't I been through enough, without you dumping me with David Brent?"

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The Light House

Nearly 5,000 people have so far signed an online petition to save the Light House, an independent cinema and community arts centre in Wolverhampton.

It is certainly sad to see such venues disappear. But if everyone who signed the petition had visited the 260-seat cinema just twice a year, it would never have been at risk in the first place.