More scary than the deepening recession and the threat of pandemic pig flu from Mexico is the news that councillors in Essex are setting up their own bank. I'm sure it's a good thing in principle for people to have access to loans that are unavailable elsewhere during the credit crunch. But the Bank of Essex? Do me a favour, me old son. The brand lacks a little of the gravitas and stability that I'm seeking in the current climate.
I can picture the Romford branch in my mind already. 'You want a loan, Mr Woodford? Got a geezer out the back who'll see you right. Only you don't want to miss any of them payments if you know what I mean. We had a customer last week who took liberties. He went for a little ride on the roller coaster at Clacton. Anyway, while your 'ere, I couldn't interest you in a Rolex, could I?'