Channel 4 News: Brexit, Bisto and grenades

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Channel 4 News Channel 4

Is there a more poignant emblem of the confusion of Brexit than the remainer with the grenades? Hail Channel 4 News for finding him. C4N is the Jerry Lee Lewis of UK network news, with its crazy socks, lion-vs-ibex bothering of victims, and nearly an hour to get to the throat of the matter and tear it out.

Actually, forget Jerry Lee, it’s more like a drill group. It’s got bigger blades, better videos and it ain’t scared of the authorities. On Wednesday it was tooled up for the Brexit deal announcement but got a closed door at No 10 and naff all to tell us.

No worries. Okay, the first half was just absorbing the blanks from Westminster – including a wild suggestion that the PM had got what she wanted – but then they served up the good stuff.

Antipasto was from Newry, on the border, but it wasn’t olives and anchovies, it was Bisto. The nation’s favourite gravy. Unifier of the modern kingdom. Paraic O’Brien, go for it, said Jon Snow. The businesses of Newry have been going blue, said Paraic. By the way, Newry was full of cross-border shoppers from Dublin. Do you think whoever is Northern Ireland secretary by today would even understand that?

Paraic found a Newry native. “Bisto is being stockpiled because of the Brexit!” she said. “So my mum has sent me downtown to buy Bisto. She doesn’t like the granules, you see?”

Granules, see? You just don’t get this stuff on the other channels. One DUP MP described the deal as the UK getting a punishment beating from the EU, said Paraic. Crikey. You don’t get that either.

Better to come though. Doncaster (69% leaving) was up next. Clare Fallon was there, at the market. “France runs the water in England,” said Kevin, as if they were actually over here, wearing berets and turning on all the taps. “What’s France doing running our water? This is England, not France.”

Kevin sells ornamental dogs “and other things”. Crap, by the looks of it. He’s as hard Brexit as they come, said Clare. “I’ve seen it all,” he said. “I’m 49 years old, luv! It should be England again. England, not European.”

Two stalls down was grenade/remain guy Martin, selling war tackle. Helmets £45, grenades a score. He was incensed. You’ve got to hope they’re not live. You’ve got to hope he’s selling them as memorabilia, not actual fighting gear.

“I wanted to remain,” he said, picking up a grenade, “because my grenades ‘ere cost me a fiver, right? Now me grenades cost me a tenner! And I’ve gotta pass that price on to t’customer! Cos they’re from Holland!”

To Martin, Brexit already means paying more for grenades, said Clare. Who thought it would come to this, so bad, so soon? Then they had Tony Blair.

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