- Problems for Christmas Lights
- Christmas News Stories
- Hull City Council Bans Santa Hats
- Philippines Declares War on Carol Singers
- Infamous Conker Ban - Cumbria, England
- Fake Bonfires
See some real Christmas lights here
- 1 Problems for Christmas Lights in the UK
- 2 Green 'Dormat' Christmas Tree - Red Tape in Poole Dorest
- 3 More Examples of Red Tape Curtailing Christmas Lights
- 4 The Underlying Reason for Red Tape - Litigation
- 5 Hull City Council Bans Santa Hats
- 6 French Parents Seek Ban on Father Christmas Advert
- 7 Red Tape in Other Countries
- 8 Grinch Handcuffs Santa's Writing Hand
- 9 Philippines Declares War on Carol Singers
- 10 Infamous Conker Ban - Cumbria, England 2004
- 11 Other Cases of Red Tape
- 12 Silly Bans Spread to Pancake Day
Green 'Dormat' Christmas Tree - Red Tape in Poole DorestHas the above structure been abandoned by a green doormat salesman? Sadly, it's the work of the Health (elf?) and Safety committee in Poole, Dorset, England. Official speak says this green 'Dormat' is wonderful because, it has no trunk therefore it won't blow over on street traders. There are no branches to break off and land on someone's head, no pine needles to poke a passer-by in the eye, no decorations for drunken teenagers to steal and no angel, presumably because it would need a dangerously long ladder to place it at the top. For as long as people in Poole could remember they had a lovely genuine Norwegian fir, which was tastefully decorated in coloured lights at a cost of about £500. In contrast the green doormat tree cost not £1,400 as we first thought but a whopping £14,000. After dark it displays fairy lights and has built-in speakers to play Christmas carols, but 95% of the Poole residents preferred the traditional tree.
More Examples of Red Tape Curtailing Christmas LightsShops in Clevedon, Bristol, UK, have abandoned their plans for illuminations because North Somerset Council told them that lights can no longer be attached to lampposts or buildings. Bob Hughes, of local traders' association, said: 'We have also been told that we cannot attach lights or motifs to the lampposts along the street as we have done in previous years.' The council Jobsworth says: 'There is a code of practice which has to be followed regarding the installation of Christmas lights. The lighting columns are concrete and it is not possible to attach lights to them.' In another case from Bodmin, Cornwall, the council has been ordered to use a pressure gauge to test all 150 bolts which hold Christmas lights. This would cost the authority £1,200 in training fees, plus their wages and the cost of the equipment. Also, to test the bolts the roads have to be closed for a day during testing and for another day while the lights are actually fitted. The lights cost £7,000 last year but the chamber of commerce has ruled that the increased cash cannot be found. Kim Roscoe, council spokesman, said: 'Health and safety requirements have greatly increased the costs. Bodmin will not be the same without its Christmas lights, and it is particularly galling as last year was the best ever.' In Sandwell, Worcestershire, traders have been told that lights cannot be hung across the widths of roads, because of fears that cables may break. Scarborough Council has planned an 'electric parade' with a pantomime theme to make up for the disappointment of last year's celebrity switch-on, which was cancelled because of police objections on various health and safety issues.
French Parents Seek Ban on Father Christmas AdvertFrench parents have sought to ban a television commercial in which a father tells his adult son that Father Christmas does not exist, claiming it has traumatised their children Will and Guy have discovered. The 20-second clip was aired last week during a commercial break on TF1, which was broadcasting the family film, "Ratatouille". 'Son, I've got some bad news for you,' says the father in the advert for Crédit Mutuel, a high street bank. 'Father Christmas doesn't exist,' he says, making a parallel with financial advisers whose prime motivation for selling products, he claims, is their commission. The commercial sparked outrage among parents who are calling on the advertising watchdog to ban the clip.
Red Tape in Other CountriesGrinch handcuff Santa's writing hand. Background: Santa's reply service began in 1954 in the Alaskan village of North Pole, where volunteers open and respond to stacks of mail addressed to Santa. All their reply letters come with the famous North Pole postmark. North Pole mayor Doug Isaacson is outraged that the scheme is affected by a sex offender's actions on the east coast. The postal service began tightening its policies in 2006, and now prohibits its volunteers from accessing children's surnames and addresses. Instead, it blanks out the last name and address on each letter and replaces them with codes that match computerised addresses known only to the post office.
- Midlothian council left the lights on at a disused school in case unauthorised intruders tripped over in the dark.
- Firemen in Essex, England were warned that they faced disciplinary action after sleeping on their fire station floor because it was 'an unauthorised rest facility.'
- A charity Easter duck race at Lymm, Warrington, England was cancelled for health and safety reasons. The alternative would have been to pay the council £3,000 to close the roads. This would have been more than the charity duck race would have raised.Chairman James Phipps said: 'We're disappointed that this has had to happen after 15 incident-free years. I don't hold the council responsible - it comes down to a wider paranoia about litigation. The local comedian said that they weren't using red tape but duct tape! (duck tape).
- From the other side of the fence. In December 2005, the U.S. Attorney's Office for the Middle District of Tennessee announced that two officials had been arrested for for taking bribes for the purchase of - red tape. In this true story, the officials were found to be taking kickbacks of $1 per roll. The worst part of the affair to our thinking was that one small department could buy 100,000 rolls of red tape!
- In Tajikistan (ex region of USSR ), visitors require 11 permits to gain admittance.