Comedian Phil Evans is from Ammanford. He is known as the man who puts the ‘cwtsh’ into comedy. This column appears in the South Wales Evening Post, Carmarthen Journal and Llanelli Star. Website – www.philevans.co.uk
Almost every day, doom-laden articles in the newspapers and sour-faced ‘experts’ on the telly warn us, with what seems to be lip-smacking relish . . .
“The High Street is dead. Everyone in the world now buys everything on line!”
If everyone is sat at home, hunched over their laptop or smart phone ordering everything from a 90-inch TV to an egg and cress sandwich (with the crusts cut off!) from a food delivery service, I have a question.
When I visit a supermarket exactly who arethose people I have to queue behind for ages at the check-out?
Alien visitors from the far distant reaches of the galaxy looking for some ‘Buy One Get One Free’ bargains in the cheese aisle?
And when I venture into town to buy something, even if it’s only a coffee and a newspaper, there always seem to be plenty of people around.
Admittedly, during the week and outside the school holidays, the majority of people out shopping, sat in coffee shops and restaurants and popping into travel agents to book their next holiday, tend to be retired.
The reason they, along with mums and their children make up the majority of week-day shoppers is because most people of working age are at work!
Many of them in shops!
Who-da thunk it?
That the High Street is alive and well was proven recently when the winner of the 2018 Great British High Street Award (thanks to the judges being so impressed by its bustling main street lined with family-run independent stores) was . . . drum roll, please . . . Crickhowell, Powys.
Residents love their town so much, 267 of them clubbed together to buy a pub, which was due to close down, rather than see a national chain store take it over.
It’s now been turned into three new independent shops.
So, the next time you go shopping, don’t go out of town. Go ‘into’ town.
If enough of you do, this time next year, your town’smain street might win the award.
Every week I get a chance to share a bit of me with you, which at times can be both challenging and colourful. Yet it’s a privilege for me in so many ways.
Having said that, occasionally this newspaper editor does pull me up on a few things.
And there was me thinking that freedom of speech was now in abundance in these modern times.
So, why do we read the newspapers when we are bombarded with news items from one source or another 24 hours a day, seven days a week?
Well, maybe your reasoning is different to mine, but research suggests that we are addicted to gossip and negative news.
Could this be the reason that the majority of the population can’t keep secrets?
This has certainly made me think about my back catalogue of stories, which on the whole are true, despite the slight exaggerated bits for comedic effect.
I’m sure you understand.
Not that I’m complaining, mind you – as I love the fact that as part of my job people share events and stories with me.
Long may it continue.
You can follow Phil Evans on Twitter @philevanswales and www.philevans.co.uk