Gloucester scoffed at by Guardian journalist
GLOUCESTER still has plenty of magic – according to residents who have hit back at an article about the city in the 'middle-class' Guardian.
In a piece entitled 'Let's move to Gloucester' writer Tom Dyckhoff said: "Tourists arriving to visit the Cathedral's cloister – as seen in Harry Potter – must wonder what the Voldemort has happened to Hogwarts.
"Oh, Gloucester! When did it all turn sour? You started out so great. I mean, look at that Cathedral! How can you go wrong?"
He even brings up serial killer Fred West in the property article which runs each week in the national paper.
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Some anonymous people echoed the writer's criticism of the city. One commented: "Gloucester has been spinning down market for 40 years. Long blessed with a council with the aesthetic sensibilities of a warthog and the business acumen of a tomato, the city has gone from bad to worse, making ill-considered judgements."
But others have leapt to Gloucester's defence.
Town crier Alan Myatt said: "When they stop talking about you that's when you should be worried. Gloucester has got a lot to shout about."
Born and bred Gloucester woman Beverley Layhe, 50, said: "I was born in Millbrook Street so I know this city pretty well, better than the writer anyway. It's a nice place with friendly people.
"Some people might see it as a bit shabby but actually my aunt visited recently and she loved it here. You can trot around town quite easily and have a pleasant day out."
John Redfearn, owner of the Crow's Nest cafe, said: "It is easy for The Guardian to dish out their middle-class viewpoint having only spent an afternoon here. If they took the time to get to know our city they would realise just how charming it can be."
The Westgate's bar manager Chris Marsh said: "I've lived here 15 years and I like to call it home. There's more to Gloucester than just a Cathedral. We are hearing that there is no better place to do business these days so it is all looking up for the city."
Nicky Wildin, owner of StanMan's Kitchen, said: "Only today I've had visitors from as far away as Japan and the Netherlands. They love it here."
The Guardian's article did have some nice parts. It said: "There's something about this city. You trudge past another dual carriageway, concrete fag packet or Blair-era visionary, iconic, luxury dockside apartment concept, then happen on a Regency parade straight outta Cheltenham, a pleasant suburb or a cheerful park. Good schools, too."