Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Wish you were here

The soaring number of Brits arrested abroad

Mid-August. For many, holiday time. Today Sky News reports Foreign Office figures about the soaring number of Britons arrested while on holiday abroad. Over 2,000 Brits were arrested in 2006-07, in Spain alone, mainly for getting pissed and acting like twats.

The emergence of low-fare flights allowed hordes of subhuman scum - those who wouldn’t otherwise dream of leaving their neighbourhood in order to 'stay local' - to suddenly be scattered across Europe, with certain Greek, Spanish and Portuguese resorts being the most popular destinations. The concept is quite simple: you just cut and paste your English town centre's street-vomiting and brawling across to the warm shores of Rhodes, Benidorm or the Algarve.

On several occasions we wrote of many Brits' subconscious post-colonial attitude. Indeed, to some of them, foreign soil is fair game and acts of bravado take an even more extreme dimension. Otherwise they wouldn’t be 'avin a laff, would they? The Polish city of Krakow became one of the first cities where the local authorities decided that they'd had enough of the Britons' pre-nuptial machismo and started to ban stag parties from bars and clubs across the city. "You see them groping girls, dancing nude, smashing up chairs and vomiting", were some of the complaints from local residents.

The same phenomenon had occurred in Dublin in the late 90s, when hordes of Brits ready to party round the clock started to flood the Irish capital on a weekly basis. The mess only abated when local authorities, tired to mop up the debris left by the fun-loving Brits decided to enforce a ban on single-sex parties in pubs and clubs in the city's district of Temple Bar. It was estimated that the thousands of British men were putting off other tourists, costing the local trade £57 million each year.

More often than not though, the bit of fun turns into horror. According to the Foreign Office, consulates are constantly bombarded by requests for help following stag or hen nights gone wrong. Half of the requests for assistance involve lost or stolen money, a third involved illness or injury and a quarter concerned arrests mainly for being drunk and disorderly. Overall consulate figures show that 3,900 Britons die abroad each year, 4,200 are taken into hospital and 6,000 are detained in foreign prison, at least in part the consequence of drunken and yobbish tourism.

In The Guardian, Andrew Anthony summed it up wryly:

"Nowadays, in the streets of capitals across mainland Europe, you can find young Britons emptying both their bladders and stomachs. They say that the youth of today lack beliefs, but these are men and women who are fully committed to the cause of alcoholic annihilation. They will simply not rest until they have relinquished all control of their motor skills".

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