...we've got the means to make amends. I am lost, I'm no guide, but I'm by your side. (Pearl Jam, Leash)

Thursday, June 22, 2006

"I’m Richard, I’m going to be doing some youth work here."

Good to know that I'm not the only one who can get huggy and emotional after drinking:
Richard Ashcroft Arrested at Youth Club
From The Sun, 6/21/06

RICHARD ASHCROFT was arrested this week after bursting into a youth club and demanding to work with the baffled teens. Witnesses say the former VERVE frontman appeared drunk and looked like a tramp as he began swearing and refusing to leave. Staff called cops and Ashcroft was taken into custody for a couple of hours, then given an £80 fixed penalty fine for disorderly behaviour and released.

One eyewitness told me: “He was very strung out and close to tears at one point. He kept saying he wanted to work with kids, that he wanted to do ‘good things’. “He wasn’t aggressive, in fact he was quite charming and friendly. He kept hugging some staff and kids. But when the police arrived he was almost begging to be arrested. They told him to go quietly but he wouldn’t.”

The singer, famous for songs like The Drugs Don’t Work and who earned the nickname “Mad Richard” during his Verve heyday, entered The Bridge club in Chippenham, Wilts, just before 8pm on Monday. The club is near where his wife Kate’s family live. Around 60 youngsters in their early teens were relaxing and playing games when he arrived.

The witness said: “It was surreal and we couldn’t believe it at first. He looked like a tramp. He was dishevelled and unshaven, with filthy clothes, and there was saliva caked around his mouth. “He was off his head, although he wasn’t slurring his words. One of the staff said, ‘You’re the spitting image of Richard Ashcroft’. And he said, ‘That’s because I am.’ When they asked what he was doing there he said, ‘I’ve just come to see the kids. I want to see what’s going on in the youth club.’”

Ashcroft then announced he would like to work with the youngsters but the woman in charge of the club told him he would have to go through the proper channels.

The insider added: “He kept swearing and saying, ‘I’m Richard, I’m going to be doing some youth work here. You’ll be seeing a lot more of me, this is my first night.’ The woman was getting more and more anxious and rang her boss and I think he told her to call the police.”
Ashcroft then slumped on a sofa and the kids gathered around and asked him: “Are you really a rock star?”

When a lone police officer arrived, the star was seen arguing with him outside. The insider said: “He started getting aggressive towards the policeman and was swearing and asking him what his ‘f***ing problem’ was. The officer called for back-up and a patrol car arrived and took him away.” A spokesman for Wiltshire Police said Ashcroft was arrested for a public order offence and taken into custody. A police source added: “It looked like he was drunk. He was discharged once he had calmed down.”



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