We'd like to make it clear that this gentleman is NOT the GOS. This is a different grumpy old sod entirely ...
A grandfather branded a real-life Victor Meldrew after he shot an air rifle in the street claimed today he has been driven from his home. Former paratrooper Brian Cotton has been arrested four times in three years following complaints from neighbours about his 'aggressive and threatening behaviour'.
But Mr Cotton, 74, denies being like the grumpy pensioner from One Foot In The Grave and claims he was the 'victim' despite being given an ASBO order in court. He even kept a log book recording every incident at his house including 'stones thrown at shed', 'stones thrown at rear window', 'shouting outside back' and 'lots of dog barking'. But in his four years living at the warden-controlled over-55s estate in Penwortham, near Preston, Lancashire, Mr Cotton was accused of firing the rifle, hurling abuse in a community centre and pulling faces through a neighbour's window.
The former town councillor has now quit the retirement estate run by Contour Homes following a string of complaints. He said today: 'The trouble with this country is that although you know you are innocent you have to plead guilty because it is cheaper and easier to just forget about it. The anti-social behaviour allegations were particularly upsetting. Those charges were just built on lies.
'I am no grumpy old man. I don't know what the world is coming to if that is how I am perceived. I went away to Tenerife last year while it was the Queen's Diamond Jubilee and I left £100 to buy everyone a drink at the community centre. That's not Victor Meldrew behaviour. I'm just tired of feeling like I'm always in the wrong.'
In April last year, Contour Homes secured an anti-social behaviour injunction order against Mr Cotton, banning him from walking on the pavement outside a neighbour's home and he was put on a four-month curfew from 8pm to 8am. Officials said between 2009 and 2012 Mr Cotton was 'aggressive and threatening towards his neighbours, which required police attendances and officer intervention.' He was arrested for a fourth time shortly before Christmas, on the same day he had been found guilty in a civil court of another charge of anti-social behaviour.
Mr Cotton served for five years as a paratrooper from 1959 in 16th Parachute Regiment and served in Tripoli, Libya, where he was badly injured when he was run over by a lorry. The former miner is no stranger to notoriety. He was arrested in his hometown of Ilfracombe, Devon, in 2003 when he called colleagues 'plonkers' while sitting as a Labour councillor. He has also previously been accused of verbal abuse and distributing leaflets containing offensive words.
He moved to Lancashire in 2009 with wife Valerie but he became the subject of a string of complaints about him 'engaging in nuisance and anti-social behaviour - including aggressive, abusive and threatening behaviour towards his neighbours'.
Mr Cotton believes the problems on the quiet estate were caused by him owning his own property while many other residents either rented or had shared ownership. He admitted that he fired an air gun towards a neighbour's house but said he was trying to scare pigeons. He also admitted to being placed on a curfew for 'making faces' through the same neighbour's living room window. Contour Homes staff also accused him of swearing in the local community centre and ripping up bingo tickets.
He claims he was convicted of the anti-social behaviour because he is 'hopeless in court'. Mr Cotton said: 'There were hundreds of incidents at my house, pellets being fired at the building and vandalism outside. I used to tell the police every time there was an incident but it always ended up with me getting in trouble.
'I bought an air rifle because my house was being shot at. A neighbour used to feed the pigeons and they made a real mess so I used to fire it at a wooden block to scare them away. I was the victim in this situation but I was always made out to be the bad guy and I was taken to court several times.'
But neighbours say they were tormented by Mr Cotton during his four years on the estate. One, who did not want to be named, said: 'He was just like Victor Meldrew with all his grumpiness but he was also menace too. We're glad to see the back of him.'
A spokesman for Contour said: 'He was given an ASB Injunction Order following a hearing at Preston County Court. This was discharged at a further hearing in September 2012, when Mr Cotton offered to enter into a court undertaking and made a formal promise to the court as to his future behaviour. Contour accepted Mr Cotton's offer.
'Prior to issuing the court action, staff made numerous attempts to address his conduct and met with him about his behaviour. Contour Homes has worked very closely with the Lancashire Constabulary to address the complaints made against Mr Cotton and to ensure the safety of staff and residents.'
The GOS says: Yes, I think we all know what's been going on here.
But all the same ... respect to our brother Cotton. Clearly a kindred spirit. Perhaps we need to create a special award for people like him? - “UN-Wanker of the Week”?
either on this site or on the World Wide Web.
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