Thank you Channel 4 for last night’s jaw dropping television. As soon as we hit 9pm it was game on. ‘Meet the Police and Crime Commissioner’ – Ann Barnes. I tried to put my 18 years policing experience behind me, (which of course means I’m institutionally cynical), and keep an open mind but Ann Barnes, Kent PCC, was so annoying I just couldn’t help myself. Is her script writer the same guy who writes The Office? (I don’t know who all the writers are for The Office but its TV so they are obviously blokes).
This lady’s style of leadership was akin to mediaeval aristocracy i.e. talk down to people, (for four hours on one occasion), until their ears start to bleed and if they don’t grease around you enough set the dogs on them, (oh yes she did).
Then she had a good idea – mobile police stations. Very innovative Mrs Barnes. My little force of Humberside were doing it about 15 years ago and nobody came then either – you could’ve just asked me.
She came out with a string of absolute classics including:- ‘There isn’t a plan’, ‘He always makes good decisions even when they’re the wrong ones’, and ‘Can we ignore Eric Pickles?’ – (we all can love, if he gets too intimidating just imagine him in a onesie – or maybe a twosie – that always works for me).
As an experienced police officer who cares about the organisation I didn’t know whether to laugh, cry, or self-harm. In the end I went for option one and sat there absolutely pissing myself. Anyone who thought that PCC’s were a bad idea has been left in absolutely no doubt. The fact that she actually thought that she’d come across in a good light by patronising all before her says it all. I don’t blame Channel 4 for dodgy editing as clearly they only needed to point a camera and watch this lady dance. Abolish Police and Crime Commissioners? To be honest, if this is any judge of their comedic value, I think that there should be more of them – perhaps four per force so as we can have 24hr coverage.
And as for the good people of Kent that voted for this lady let me tell you that you’re nearly as bad as those that voted for Jim Davidson to win Celebrity Big Brother – hang your heads in shame.
If you read in the news that I’ve been savaged by a pack of yappy dogs who were last seen being driven off in a ridiculous van marked ‘Ann Force 1’, then you know I’ve said too much….