Off-the-Wall 

Amazing tricks cops used to have up their sleeves

Former police officers have revealed their tricks and trade-craft from the days of ‘old fashioned coppering’. We were amazed when we stumbled across a forum thread of ex-bobbies discussing the “good’ol days”, when a make-believe canine unit was almost as good as a real one, and you knew exactly how to get a crim to stop running. All these entries are taken from an online forum contributed to by former officers (who have remained anonymous for obvious reasons). And you’d be amazed as some officers claimed their tricks are still used today.…

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Off-the-Wall 

Donald Trump could be slapped with a travel ban of his own – from this Notts council

A Nottinghamshire district is to consider imposing a travel-spending ban on Donald Trump, should he decide to swing by the county. The proposed vote would mean banning the use of any council funds to welcome the US President and provide hospitality if he were to visit the District as part of a UK tour. Ashfield could impose a travel-ban on US President Donald Trump. Put forward by Ashfield Independent Councillor Helen-Ann Smith, it would effectively take Ashfield off the list of potential areas. It is prompted by ‘concern’ that the…

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Grandad claims he flew the Millennium Falcon and that he’s ‘the real Han Solo’

Meet the grandfather who actually piloted the Millennium Falcon – but says he’s never watched Star Wars in his life We all have things we’re proud of or that we like to brag about to friends down the pub. But when you meet someone who says ‘I flew the Millennium Falcon’, the rest of us might as well go home. But that is exactly what Warsop pensioner Colin Coombes did, after he was drafted in by George Lucas to make the most of his skills as an engineer. The real-life…

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Off-the-Wall 

Meet the man who lived in a cinema, but never really fancied watching the movies

Few people know more about Mansfield’s cinema history than Fred Shelton – and amazingly the Forest Town pensioner says he’s never been to see a film in his life. The projectionist pulls down a screen to block out the window light. In his living room, he sets up a cinema of his very own. At the back of the room, he fixes a 16mm film reel to the plate and the wheel starts to whirl. The projector flickers, and the show begins. As Fred Shelton sits in his chair, the…

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Off-the-Wall 

21st Century psychic reads fortune over Skype

We challenged our reporter Nick Charity to do something he’d never dream of doing. So, he went to see a psychic – and not even the psychic saw that coming. Janette Hilton is a psychic clairvoyant. That doesn’t mean she can talk to ghosts (actually, she claims she is still developing her mediumistic abilities) but she believes there are different kinds of energy that guide our lives, and by attuning her mind to the vibrations she hopes she can help others understand their own energies. “You’ll just have to let…

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Off-the-Wall 

James Brown, the Godfather of suction dubbed ‘most boring man in Derbyshire’

James Brown, no not the infamous funk and soul legend, but Derbyshire’s world-record breaking collector of vintage hoovers, has put Heanor on the map once more after already making national headlines as one of Britain’s dullest men. The vacuum enthusiast and proud owner of his own museum of cleaners is famed for his Guiness World Record, and now features in a new book, ‘Dull Men of Great Britain’. And James, a ‘normal’ 36-year-old (who also enjoys to go out and doing things like the rest of us) claims he is…

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