And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Cameron that the out of town retail car parks should be taxed. And all went to be taxed, every one to the edge of his own city. Unless thou shop online at Play.com and avoid VAT using Jersey as a base (until the wise man Osborne closes that loophole).
And Joseph also went up from Skipton, out of the city of St Asaph, into Birmingham’s Jewellery Quarter, unto the city of David, which is called Witney; (because he was of the house and lineage of David, which is middle England, with a (very nearly) town centre Waitrose) to be taxed with his espoused wife, she being great with child; for they needed some white goods for their abode. It passed that Rumbelows had ceased trading and Euro Appliances a total stock liquidation event – the streets too narrow trafficked and double yellowed to load without risking a ticket. And so it was, that, while they were there, the days were accomplished such that her pram and washing machine should be home delivered.
And she brought forth her firstborn, wrapped in swaddling clothes, laid in a manger; because there was no town centre hotel of repute, Joseph opteth for a non-smoking family room at the Premier Inn Abingdon.And there were in an off-shore country, in absentialandlords, keeping watch over their flock by night. And, lo, the angel of the Association of Town Centre Management came upon them, and its glory shone round about them: and they were sore afraid: And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, for ye shall be required to invest, disincentivise vacancies, place thyself on a public register of ownership and sponsor the Annual Market Day.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Retail Marketing ‘Guru’, which is Mary of Portas. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find her wrapped in hand made clothes, lying in an artisan manger; her parents feasting off 28-day hung beef and seasonal vegetables bought fresh daily from the High Street market. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising BIDs and free donkey tethering at High Street, and saying, Glory to High Street in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward Town Teams and annual reports.
And it came to pass, as the angels were gone away from them, the landlords said one to another, Let us now go even unto Witney, and lay witness to the future of deregulation and town centre first policy which had come to pass, which the Portas hath made known unto us. And they came with haste. And when they had seen it, they made known abroad the saying which was told them concerning this Guru – and those lying abroad said “we’ve been doing that for years mate”. And all they that heard it, wondered at those things which were told them. But Dame Mary kept all these things, and pondered them in her heart.