Long stalk of the law 

WE all knew that police and crime commissioner Anthony Stansfeld had difficult decisions to make regarding the police budget this week – but few foresaw the decision to replace police batons with vegetables.

It seems even the move to raise tax across the county was not enough to save the traditional truncheons used by Thames Valley officers.

What a tragic sight it was to see even city commander, Supt Joe Kidman, brandishing a broccoli – the cost-cutting model – on Twitter.

Still, at least the new additions will put them in good stead for TVP’s next campaign, when the force wages war on rambunctious children who refuse to eat their greens.

Fading memories of sharks gone by 

Oxford Mail:

LONG-STANDING councillor John Tanner has done some controversial things in his time.

But it turns out opposing Headington’s now beloved Shark House wasn’t one of them. 

Recollecting his row with the council, Shark House creator Bill Heine name-checked Mr Tanner as being one of its most vocal critics.

But when he was phoned up for comment, the councillor was confused.

“Memory serves that I supported the Shark House but let me just check with my wife,” he said.

A few minutes later he rang back to confirm his wife had corroborated the story and asked if Mr Heine perhaps meant John Power saying: “We were often confused at the time as well.”

Mr Power was called and, as his outspoken comments in Saturday’s paper show, confirmed we’d finally got the right John.

Not-so Bobby Dazzler

Oxford Mail:

POOR old Robert Courts. The Witney MP’s excitement at being made a parliamentary private secretary at the Foreign Office was palpable, but not everybody felt the same way.

Mr Courts tweeted to say he was delighted to have been appointed to the role, traditionally a first step to higher office.

He tagged his bosses Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson and ministers Alistair Burt, Alan Duncan, Mark Field and Harriet Baldwin in the tweet.

But Mr Burt was the only person to retweet or like the post, while Mr Johnson, Mr Duncan and Mrs Baldwin were all conspicuously silent.
The Insider hopes for happier times ahead for Mr Courts.