Luton Borough Council has fanfared the benefits of living in Luton. One benefit of living Luton it is claimed is that its closeness to London means Luton is accessible to London by railway, motorway, bus & coach. A second benefit of living in Luton, is that house prices are relatively cheaper than in London, and people from London seeking to live in Luton will be able to benefit from a lifestyle similar to that of London. This is because of Luton Borough Council’s, Galaxy Centre and Mall shopping Centre and the continuing development of its Guilford Street ‘Hat Factory area’ cultural hub, and new Sports & Leisure facilities.  All these developments being coupled with an objective to improve Luton’s retail and restaurant offerings with plans in the pipeline for a new football stadium and retail and food facilities at Power Court and a new retail park at Newlands Road.

On Saturday 5th January, we took advantage of the benefit of accessibility to London and beyond afforded by a train journey from Harlington, trough Leagrave and Luton, Harpenden,ST Albans and onto London to Gatwick Airport and Brighton . We travelled to London Blackfriars from where we walked to the Barbican Centre beyond St Paul’s to see Shakespeare’s ‘The Merry Wives of Windsor’.

After a conversation with people in the Barbican Centre’s bar area about what a bad thing Brexit would be for the United kingdom, we entered the theatre to hear how the play came to be written. Queen Elizabeth1 was a fan of Sir John Falstaff and as a consequence commissioned Shakespeare to write a play with the proviso that Sir John played the leading role. So ‘ The Merry Wives of Windsor ‘ was conceived.

The play was extremely entertaining as it benefitted from the use of contemporary language spoken by a multicultural cast rather than, Shakespeare’s interesting but sometimes abstruse arcane language, and by audience participation in a rendition of the Welsh National Anthem! Some of the bosomy wives were depicted in leopard print clothing, relaxing in beauty parlours, chatting to one another about their relationships with their partners and paramours. Whilst the tour de force Sir John ambled across the stage, with his wide girth and erect codpiece on show, rambling on about his love for one of the merry wives. A particular amusing moment was the decanting of Sir John into a Pink Wheelie bin.

On contemplating this experience in Cote Brasserie at Ludgate Hill. I wondered whether Luton’s proximity to the undisputed cultural assets of London was a good or a bad thing. Unfortunately, for some Luton people, I concluded it was probably a bad thing. Over the past few decades Luton Councillors have lost confidence in their Borough, principally because Luton has been often been perceived by comedians as a dilapidated badly developed town. However, unlike Luton Town Councillors, principally, Cllr Sian Timoney @sj luton. Luton’s topophiliacs, who have always Loved Luton because they were born there and always lived there, unlike the new commuters who would wish to refashion Luton to resemble the places they chose to live in London, at the expense of Luton’s intrinsic assets. For example, Luton’s accessibility to the grandeur of the North Chilterns Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty (AONB), at the North of Luton Borough, and open countryside at Peters Green, Tea Green, Breachwood Green, Lily and Offley adjacent to the ever expanding Airport and its associated transport facilities.