Mark Steel's In Town, By Mark Steel

 

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The Independent Culture

Many books are compared to Priestley's English Journey but Steel is as perceptive as JB and far funnier.

This circumnavigation is perfect for our own seedy time. "Keighley is a sink of evil," insists a woman from Skipton. Steel shows righteous anger about modern Britain.

Noting that the Digger community in Surrey is now a gated estate, Steel remarks: "If Gerard Winstanley wanted to grow parsnips... he'd need a division of fucking great tanks."

Occasionally Steel's ear lets him down (Boycott would not say that a Pietersen shot "was a pile of shit" but "were a pile...") but never his comic antennae.

A Twitter exchange about Luddism near Huddersfield drew the comment: "Go on, Mark, slag off Luddites...it's not like they'll be following you here."

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