FixMyStreet: celebrating our users’ eloquence

Beautifully crafted prose: it’s not generally the first thing on your mind when you’re contacting the council about potholes, overflowing bins, or a faulty streetlight.

And yet, some FixMyStreet users clearly take a certain delight in the art. Today, we’d like to bring you ten FixMyStreet reports that go above and beyond the usual calibre of citizen-to-council communication, and ascend almost to the level of… dare we say, art?

1. The clanking manhole

 Eric Konon

Image: Eric Konon (CC)

Last night I conjured a horde of Spartan warriors smashing their shields with copies of the Highway Code. I believe that’s what they call an involuntary metaphor.

Michael bought a flat near the main road. He didn’t mind, until one day, a manhole started clanking… and clanking… Read the whole report here.

2. The missing road sign

Chris in Plymouth

Image: Chris in Plymouth (CC)

The posts designed to proudly hold aloft the road name, guiding lost wanderers towards their destination, stand forlornly, relics from a forgotten age, their purpose lost to the mists of time.

The initial report is nothing out of the ordinary – it’s in the updates that this Hythe resident starts really going to town. Read the whole report here.

3. Roland Rat

Image by Gareth

Image: Gareth (CC)

Ten days on, he stinks and if he gets any flatter from vehicles running over him, I’ll stick a stamp on him and post him.

A concerned citizen of Appledore left a dead rat in situ, just to see what would happen. Read the full report here.

4. Superdog

Melanie Cook

Image: Melanie Cook (CC)

Maybe laid by a new breed of super dog. It is still steaming and has been there for weeks.

Need we explain the context for this one? In fact, there’s little more to it than you see quoted above, but with imagery like that, who needs reams of prose? See the whole report here.

5. Battling gulls of Cardiff

John HaslamImage: John Haslam (CC)

Splattered birds on the road, presumably […] too exhausted after battling with piercing the hardy black plastic, to get to the riches within, to attempt fly away to safety.

This anonymous user was fed up with seeing residents put food out in their rubbish, attracting gulls. Read the whole report here.

6. With a little imagination, any street fault can be a boon

Ben Osteen

Image: Ben Osteen (CC)

I have had my windows open fantasising that I am living on an Italian Piazza with an enormous fountain at its centre.

One Fulham resident reports a leak; a commenter urges them not to fix it. See the full report here.

7. Are clowns made of balloons?

Steve Wilhelm

Image: Steve Wilhelm (CC)

It looks like a clown has exploded

In an otherwise standard report, a Nottingham resident pulls out this extraordinary turn of phrase to describe the detritus left after a water balloon fight. Read the full report here.

8. Happy Easter

Kate Hiscock

Image: Kate Hiscock (CC)

PLEASE stop moving the bin. PLEASE keep it in ONE place *next* to the path. Not a meter away from the path, not two meters away from the path and not in the daffodils against the wall, but actually next to the path where people can reach it.

Actually, it’s not the main body of this Coldstream report itself; it’s more the polite sign-off coming straight after a rant. Very British. Read the full report here.

9. A poor, innocent mini roundabout sign

James ButlerImage: James Butler (CC)

If I didn’t know better, I’d worry [it] had been done by the Incredible Hulk after someone had made him very angry.

This Brighton mini roundabout sign has a few worries. Read the full report here.

10. Stinky bin

Henry Lydecker

Image: Henry Lydecker (CC)

A bin here smells like the devil’s halitosis

Another wonderful turn of phrase from a Plymouth FixMyStreet user in this short, but amply descriptive, post. See the full report here.

You don’t have to be a great author to make a report on FixMyStreet

Your prose may not be as purple as in the examples above, but that doesn’t matter.

In fact, if you keep reports clear, polite, and accurate, you’ll still run a good chance of getting things fixed.

Giving council workers – and FixMyStreet readers – a good laugh? That’s optional.

Make a report on FixMyStreet now