LONG may she reign over us especially with her words of wisdom.

Her Majesty the Queen has recently encouraged people from all walks of life to stop and think about the way we communicate with each other in our everyday lives.

The Queen's speech at Christmas is one of the most-watched TV programmes of the calendar year, where she sends her own recorded message to each and everyone of us.

Our monarch's carefully articulated words (Queen's English, of course,) never fall on deaf ears and long may that continue.

How could we ever forget her famous 'Annus Horribilis?'

We've all been there.

I look forward to being around to see the day she sends herself a birthday telegram when she turns a hundred in seven years' time.

Lately, the Queen made headline news for all right reasons when she attended a Women's Institute meeting at her Sandringham estate.

And she knew she would be widely-quoted as she echoed her December 25 broadcast.

Great PR from ER.

She seemed to hint at the way our politicians are handling Brexit.

The Queen is not amused – it runs in the family, neither are her loyal subjects

She said: "I prefer the tried and tested recipes ... like coming together to seek out the common ground. And never losing sight of the bigger picture."

The UK's most famous non-commoner makes utter common sense.

She also spoke inspiringly about 'patience, friendship and community focus.'

Our neutral, apolitical monarch clearly knows what makes her people tick.

The Queen is rumoured to have a great sense of humour and can do a formidable Scouse accent (alright there, Queen).

And last week she was team captain in a live game of the TV hit Pointless at the Sandringham WI.

She won three-out-of-five matches and picked up a Pointless trophy from Sir Alexander Armstrong (well, he will be after this).

So why stop there? Her Majesty could appear on Fifteen to One, this time called ONE to Fifteen.

Or an international version of the quiz Egg Heads of State.

As for Prince Philip ... keep him away from Top Gear.


AND now to a Privy council decision with a difference.

Last November, I supported the appeal from the United Nations World Toilet Day for more public toilets - not less.

So I was saddened to hear that Wirral Council are bringing in 30p charges from March for people to use them.

Wirral Council have said that they are not required by law to provide any public toilets but rather than close existing ones (if you can ever find them) they need

to charge for their upkeep.

This is right round the bend.

They are missing the point. Public toilets are a human right.

People are living longer and with that goes a need to access toilets while out and about.

And turnstiles certainly don’t help the disabled.

When the council has organised events to bring in more tourists, I have seen queues for toilets in cafes and shops.

It is not fair on businesses and those ugly, eye-sore Portaloos are downright inconvenient.

Wirral Council are flushed with income from their environmental fixed penalty campaigns, so how about re investing funds into much-needed public toilets.

Hats off to Network Rail who are scrapping charges at Lime Street

and other stations because it is, they say, 'wrong to penalise people when they are in discomfort.'


IT was 50 years ago today ... that The Beatles were on the roof of Apple HQ, playing their last ever live gig.

Ringo and John became celebrity cross-dressers of sorts. Ringo borrowed wife Maureen's red waterproof mac while John spotted Yoko's fur.

Happiness was a warm coat.

Mark Lewisohn, the Beatle archivist (Paul once told me that he knew more about The Beatles than The Beatles) recalled that film star Ringo wanted a bit more

excitement during the 42-minute-long lunchtime gig.

Said the drummer: "I always felt let down by the police. When they came up I was playing away and I thought I hope they are going to drag me off.

"We were being filmed and it would have looked really great, kicking the cymbals and everything.

"They didn't. They just came bumbling in. saying 'you've got to turn the sound down'. It could have been fabulous."

But it was Ringo ... and now on YouTube we can all see just how fab it truly was.


DICKENS would be turning in his grave.

I was shocked to read news reports that payday money lenders Quick Loans were calling online for the 're-introduction of debtors' prisons' for bad payers some

of whom were stuck with extortionate interest payments of 1,500

per cent.

It seems even the Ghost of Christmases Past would have no effect on these modern day out-of-touch Scrooges.

Next on the agenda ... work houses?


And finally ...

A new three-part series called Europe - The First Ten Years started on Monday and was described as 'The definitive story of the European Union.'

Sadly, with 57 days to go, it looks more like a trailer for the next Die Hard movie.

Peter Grant