Gareth learns his place

Gareth Williams, aged twenty-four, junior sales executive, gazed vaguely across the office. It was full of young men just like himself; clean shaven, closely-controlled hair, dark suits, sober shirts. It looked like they had been manufactured in packs of twelve. The office was hot and it was mid-afternoon, he was bored to distraction and there … Continue reading Gareth learns his place

Changed Times – the compilation

  Readers in the United Kingdom don’t need me to tell them that arguments about leaving the European Union have been raging for more than three years and don’t seem to be resolved yet. Many people who voted to leave the EU (it seemed to me) wanted to return to sometime in the past when … Continue reading Changed Times – the compilation

The Dean’s list

Bruce is standing with his nose centimetres from the wall. The smell of damp plaster is cloying. He thinks he is about to sneeze. The passageway is hot and humid. The mid-afternoon sun blazes but none of the windows are open. They have been stuck closed for years: no budget for maintenance Bruce stares dead … Continue reading The Dean’s list

We need to talk about Jake

Wayne and Sharon Grimethorpe were watching Newsnight on television in the front room of their terraced house in Brocklehurst. “Jake’s late again,” Sharon said to her husband. He didn’t hear her. He was too engrossed in an item about the birching of juvenile delinquents at the new Short, Sharp Shock detention centres. They were going … Continue reading We need to talk about Jake

Changed Times 8. Just another day

  Click here for all episodes of Changed Times   Mr. Burton heaved a heavy sigh and glared at the three young men standing in front of his desk. Won’t they ever learn? The law had been in place for three years, they knew the rules – and the penalty for breaking them. Osbourne, Rowe … Continue reading Changed Times 8. Just another day

Changed Times 7. Pub landlord

A glimpse into the near future. The series starts here.  The landlord Kevin saw me heaving my shoulder against the heavy saloon bar door. “You’re barred!” he shouted from across the empty room before I even stepped across the threshold. He meant it too. I stood bemused. The bar was deserted apart from we two. … Continue reading Changed Times 7. Pub landlord

Changed Times 6. Birched live on TV

A glimpse into the near future. The series starts here.   The officer stared at the quivering naked buttocks before him. The world was changing. The punishment frame gleamed with its newness. He tried to ignore the camera shooting over his shoulder. He gripped the birch rod tightly and waited for his cue. “Stand by … Continue reading Changed Times 6. Birched live on TV

Changed times 1: A glimpse into the near future

Kenny Hawkins slipped on his new blazer and admired his reflection in the mirror. Pale-grey trousers, gleaming white shirt, striped tie, shiny black shoes. It looked exactly like his old school uniform. But, not quite. Only the badge on the blazer pocket was different. It showed the logo of Global Petroleum, the company that would … Continue reading Changed times 1: A glimpse into the near future

COMING SOON: Changed Times, a glimpse into the near future

The country was going through a difficult patch. It had started ten years in the past, in 2016. Britain had voted to leave the European Union. There was a political crisis. The government split, opposition parties – such as there were – had no idea. Immigrants fled back to their home countries. British Muslims hid … Continue reading COMING SOON: Changed Times, a glimpse into the near future