An Uxbridge poem!

		     In 1976 Uxbridge was undergoing great changes. The town centre relief road
		     had come into use. The stark concrete mass of the Pavilions shopping centre
		     was ready, but lacked the later refinement of an over-all roof. A Labour Council,
		     led by the left-wing John Bartlett, was in power, and had greatly increased the
		     domestic rate. The Civic Centre was under construction, but costs were continually
		     rising; and it became known that expensive roof tiles were being used which would
		     add even more to the final bill. The local firm of Carsons, Brooke-Partridge & Co.,
		     planning consultants, sent a Christmas card to all the Socialist councilors
		     containing this poem. ("Pete" was used simply because it rhymed with "street".)

				"Come friendly bombs and fall on Slough
				It isn't fit for humans now."
				So wrote John Betjeman, our mate,
				Who's now the poet Laureate.
				I know not why the fates should frown
				Upon that poor benighted town.
				If it appalls the Bard, I bet
				He surely ain't seen Uxbridge yet.
				Now there's a place where all can view
				The worst that architects can do.
				Its concrete canyons where, they say,
				The shop rent would turn Croesus grey.
				Its car parks and its traffic schemes - 
				Bewildered spider's tangled dreams.
				A town that had a certain pride
				Now needs the service of a guide
				To show the locals how to view
				Familiar landmarks once they knew.
				They've shifted graves, and poor old Pete,
				Who mouldered on down Windsor Street.
				Now eerily at midnight flips
				To Hutton's for his fish and chips.
				But more than this, the people call
				For vengeance on their new town hall.
				This monstrous lump the rates has bled,
				Its hue a shade of Kremlin red.
				Its brickwork tiles - how can we douse
				This lunacy which plagues our house.
				Full fifteen million quid to date -
				And more to come as sure as fate.
				A monument to our disdain
				Of Hillingdon's atrocious reign.
				So Londoner, if you would know
				This monster that befell us so,
				Please profit from our dire mistake -
				A pilgrimage you'll need to take.
				The Piccadilly Line, my friend,
				To Uxbridge town - the very end?

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