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Pouques and the politicians

The Guernsey pouques have decided to write a panto starring all their favourite Guernsey politicians. Guernsey Gwen reports back on the first stage- choosing the characters that the politicians will play,

The Guernsey pouques have decided to write a panto starring all their favourite Guernsey politicians. Guernsey Gwen reports back on the first stage- choosing the characters that the politicians will play,

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Guernsey <strong>Pouques</strong><br />

<strong>and</strong> <strong>the</strong> Politicians<br />

2022<br />

By Guernsey Gwen


<strong>Pouques</strong> <strong>and</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>politicians</strong><br />

The pouques decided to write a pantomime starring <strong>the</strong><br />

<strong>politicians</strong> in Guernsey.<br />

• There are 38 <strong>politicians</strong> who sit in <strong>the</strong> Guernsey parliament<br />

which is called <strong>the</strong> States of Deliberation.<br />

• The <strong>politicians</strong> are called Deputies.<br />

• There are no political parties.<br />

• Some <strong>politicians</strong> chair committees <strong>and</strong> <strong>the</strong>y have a job similar<br />

to ministers.<br />

• The top politician, a bit like a prime minister, is called <strong>the</strong> Chief<br />

Minister. The o<strong>the</strong>r <strong>politicians</strong> choose this leader.<br />

• In <strong>the</strong> last election, Guernsey people had a voting paper which<br />

was over 1 metre long with 119 names on. It didn’t fit on <strong>the</strong><br />

shelf in <strong>the</strong> voting booth. Most people voted by post. They had<br />

to choose 38 <strong>politicians</strong>.<br />

• Only 8 women <strong>politicians</strong> got voted in.<br />

• The last Guernsey election took place in October 2020 under<br />

COVID restrictions <strong>and</strong> <strong>the</strong> <strong>politicians</strong> will stay in post for four<br />

years.<br />

A report on <strong>the</strong> voting in <strong>the</strong> October 2020 election can be found<br />

here<br />

Each deputy has been assigned a character for <strong>the</strong> panto. Guernsey Gwen, <strong>the</strong> storyteller,<br />

provides her own commentary on each fairy character.<br />

2


Deputy Aldwell <strong>and</strong> Deputy de Lisle will play <strong>the</strong> Norwegian Nisse<br />

or Christmas gnomes.<br />

The Nisse live on farms, <strong>and</strong> act as <strong>the</strong> guardian. If treated well, <strong>the</strong>y protect <strong>the</strong> family <strong>and</strong><br />

animals from bad luck <strong>and</strong> help with farm work. However, <strong>the</strong>y are known to be short<br />

tempered, especially when annoyed, when <strong>the</strong>y will usually play tricks.<br />

3


Deputy Blin is <strong>the</strong> Aboriginal W<strong>and</strong>jina with lightning hair. He<br />

shouldn't really have a mouth.<br />

The W<strong>and</strong>jina created <strong>the</strong> Australian l<strong>and</strong>scape <strong>and</strong> inhabitants. The spirits painted <strong>the</strong>ir<br />

images on cave walls, <strong>and</strong> this is what modern humans can now see today.<br />

The W<strong>and</strong>jina can punish those who break <strong>the</strong> law with floods, lightning, <strong>and</strong> cyclones.<br />

4


Let’s hope that Deputy Brouard doesn't fall off too many walls like<br />

Humpty Dumpty when he is doing his politicianing.<br />

Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall,<br />

Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.<br />

All <strong>the</strong> Queen’s horses <strong>and</strong> Lieutenant Governor’s men,<br />

Couldn't put Humpty toge<strong>the</strong>r again.<br />

5


One of our few women <strong>politicians</strong>, Deputy Burford plays <strong>the</strong> part of<br />

a Danish female troldkvinde.<br />

There are lots of different types of trolls; here is a kindly troll but she needs to avoid sunlight<br />

o<strong>the</strong>rwise she will turn to stone.<br />

6


Deputy Bury is makes a kindly Guernsey witch.<br />

The Channel Isl<strong>and</strong> witches look after <strong>the</strong>ir Humans. Each isl<strong>and</strong> has <strong>the</strong>ir own witch, <strong>and</strong><br />

<strong>the</strong>y all have broomsticks that run on renewable power. They play tricks on Humans, but<br />

<strong>the</strong>y also look out for <strong>the</strong>m. They boss <strong>the</strong> pouques around.<br />

7


Deputy Cameron <strong>and</strong> Deputy Dudley Owen make a very Christmas<br />

pair; Russian Gr<strong>and</strong>pa Frost, Ded Moroz <strong>and</strong> his gr<strong>and</strong>daughter, <strong>the</strong><br />

Snow Maiden Snegurochka.<br />

They give out presents at Christmas in Eastern Europe in places like Russia <strong>and</strong> Ukraine <strong>and</strong><br />

make sure <strong>the</strong> wicked witch, Baba Yaga, doesn’t steal <strong>the</strong> gifts.<br />

8


The kindly Swedish tree spirit fairy Älva is played by Deputy De<br />

Sausmarez<br />

Älva looks after <strong>the</strong> woodl<strong>and</strong>s <strong>and</strong> animals <strong>and</strong> makes sure <strong>the</strong> natural cycles on <strong>the</strong> Earth<br />

keep everything sustainable. She gets cross with Humans who ruin <strong>the</strong> environment. It is so<br />

much easier to fly, as she doesn’t have to worry about cycling up <strong>the</strong> hills.<br />

9


I wonder if Deputy Dyke has ever considered playing Fa<strong>the</strong>r<br />

Christmas.<br />

Fa<strong>the</strong>r Christmas, or Santa Claus is well known around <strong>the</strong> world as a jolly character who<br />

gives out presents. Scientists have even calculated how fast his sled must go to get round to<br />

all <strong>the</strong> children. He lives in <strong>the</strong> North Pole <strong>and</strong> has an elf workshop where <strong>the</strong>y make all <strong>the</strong><br />

toys. This year <strong>the</strong> elves decided to reduce <strong>the</strong>ir carbon footprint, so <strong>the</strong>y banned plastic.<br />

This did make it difficult.<br />

10


Deputy Fairclough plays that naughty Scottish Ghillie Dhu.<br />

Ghillie Dhuor (Gille Dubh) is a solitary male fairy. He is kindly <strong>and</strong> reticent, yet sometimes<br />

wild in character.<br />

11


Deputy Falla plays P’tit Jean, a mischievous Guernsey pouque.<br />

The pouques are mischievous shape shifting pixies <strong>and</strong> each Channel Isl<strong>and</strong> has a colony.<br />

They like to play tricks on humans. They never tell humans <strong>the</strong>ir real name, so <strong>the</strong>y are all<br />

called P’tit Jean.<br />

12


Beware of <strong>the</strong> Chief Minister, Deputy Ferbrache. He plays <strong>the</strong> part<br />

of <strong>the</strong> giant winged Asturian serpent Cuélebre.<br />

He lives in a cave, guards treasure, <strong>and</strong> keeps anjanas as prisoners. Although <strong>the</strong>y are<br />

immortal, <strong>the</strong> cuélebre age, <strong>and</strong> <strong>the</strong>ir scales become thick <strong>and</strong> impenetrable, <strong>and</strong> batwings<br />

grow in <strong>the</strong>ir bodies. They do not usually move, but when <strong>the</strong>y do it, it is to eat cattle <strong>and</strong><br />

people.<br />

13


Deputy Gabriel looks a natural as Sinterklaas.<br />

Sinterklaas give out presents to good children in central Europe of December 5/6th. He has<br />

piets (elves) to help him out.<br />

14


Deputy Gollop looks just <strong>the</strong> part to play Olentzero, a Basque<br />

character.<br />

Olentzero carved wooden animals, toys, <strong>and</strong> dolls. When he had a big bag full of toys he<br />

hiked to <strong>the</strong> village in <strong>the</strong> valley <strong>and</strong> distributed <strong>the</strong> wooden toys amongst <strong>the</strong> children<br />

because he liked to see <strong>the</strong>m happy. One day as he came down to <strong>the</strong> village, he found a<br />

house in flames. He ran into <strong>the</strong> house <strong>and</strong> freed <strong>the</strong> trapped children by lowering <strong>the</strong>m from<br />

an upstairs window. With everyone safe he went downstairs, when suddenly <strong>the</strong> house<br />

collapsed under <strong>the</strong> fire, burying him. Olentzero now lives forever, making toys for all <strong>the</strong><br />

children in <strong>the</strong> Basque country.<br />

15


Deputy Inder plays Joulupukki, <strong>the</strong> Finnish Christmas goat who<br />

turns into a goat man at Christmas.<br />

He rings <strong>the</strong> bell <strong>and</strong> enters politely through <strong>the</strong> door, asking <strong>the</strong> still-awake families “Onko<br />

täällä kilttejä lapsia?” (“Are <strong>the</strong>re any well-behaved children here?”). He wears red robes<br />

<strong>and</strong> drives a sleigh pulled by reindeer (who don’t fly), <strong>and</strong> calls Korvatunturi in Lapl<strong>and</strong><br />

home.<br />

I wonder what <strong>the</strong> Deputy will look like as a Golden Guernsey Goat.<br />

16


Deputy Kazantseva-Miller – The Cantabrian L’Anjana fairy.<br />

These female fairy creatures are <strong>the</strong> good fairies of Cantabria, generous <strong>and</strong> protective of all<br />

people. They are seen walking through <strong>the</strong> forest trails, resting on <strong>the</strong> banks of springs <strong>and</strong><br />

streams which <strong>the</strong>n seem to come alive. They can talk with <strong>the</strong> water that flows from <strong>the</strong><br />

springs. She needs to be wary though of <strong>the</strong> Cuélebre who will take her prisoner <strong>and</strong> not call<br />

her by her proper name.<br />

17


Deputy Le Tocq plays <strong>the</strong> part from <strong>the</strong> Brittany Korrigan.<br />

Korrigans can take on any shape <strong>and</strong> move quickly. They also can transform a leafy forest to<br />

trap humans. Only a ray of daylight can dissolve <strong>the</strong> Korrigan. If you come across a Korrigan<br />

combing its hair or counting treasures on a Saturday, you should fear for your life.<br />

18


Deputy Meerveld plays <strong>the</strong> Isle of Man Moonijer Veggey (<strong>the</strong> little<br />

people)<br />

The Moonijer Veggey wear red caps <strong>and</strong> green jackets <strong>and</strong> are most often seen on horseback<br />

followed by packs of little hounds of all <strong>the</strong> colours of <strong>the</strong> rainbow. They are ra<strong>the</strong>r inclined<br />

to be mischievous <strong>and</strong> spiteful. They live in green hillsides. Anyone passing by on a clear<br />

summer's evening would probably hear delightful music; but <strong>the</strong>y must take care not to<br />

linger as <strong>the</strong>y will be captured. Moonijer Veggey are visible to people only when <strong>the</strong>y choose<br />

to be. Some of <strong>the</strong>m are benevolent, curing humans of diseases <strong>and</strong> bringing <strong>the</strong>m luck.<br />

O<strong>the</strong>rs are malevolent, stealing children, even abducting adults, <strong>and</strong> bringing bad luck.<br />

19


Deputy Moakes has been given <strong>the</strong> part of Rudolph Junior.<br />

His famous fa<strong>the</strong>r, Rudolph senior, is well known for guiding Santa’s sleigh with his large red<br />

nose which fluoresces at night due to bioluminescence.<br />

But do you recall,<br />

The most famous reindeer of all.<br />

Rudolph, <strong>the</strong> red-nosed reindeer,<br />

had a very shiny nose,<br />

<strong>and</strong> if you ever saw it,<br />

you would even say it glows.<br />

20


Deputy Murray has been given <strong>the</strong> part of <strong>the</strong> Brazilian Curupira<br />

This fairy has bright red/orange hair, <strong>and</strong> resembles a man or a dwarf, but its feet are turned<br />

backwards. Curupira lives in <strong>the</strong> forests of Brazil <strong>and</strong> uses its backward feet to create<br />

footprints that lead to a starting point, thus making human travellers confused. It can also<br />

create illusions <strong>and</strong> produce a sound like a high-pitched whistle which scares <strong>and</strong> drives its<br />

victim mad.<br />

21


Deputy Oliver plays Babushka, a friendly Russian gr<strong>and</strong>mo<strong>the</strong>r<br />

One evening Babushka was busy dusting <strong>and</strong> cleaning away. She had heard about a bright<br />

star in <strong>the</strong> sky but thought,<br />

“I don’t have <strong>the</strong> time to look because I’m so behind with my work. I must work all night!”<br />

However, <strong>the</strong>re was a knock on <strong>the</strong> door. It was <strong>the</strong> three kings who asked to say <strong>the</strong> night in<br />

her cottage. When it was time for <strong>the</strong>m to leave, <strong>the</strong>y asked Babushka to come with <strong>the</strong>m,<br />

but she said she had not finished tidying <strong>and</strong> would follow <strong>the</strong>m shortly. She went to find <strong>the</strong><br />

kings later with some toys for <strong>the</strong> Baby Jesus. She never did <strong>and</strong> so she now gives toys to<br />

children each Christmas.<br />

22


Deputy Parkinson plays <strong>the</strong> fairy frog.<br />

The fairy frog has appeared in all sorts of stories. He is associated with Jewish fairy<br />

tales where Hanina <strong>and</strong> his wife are rewarded greatly for looking after <strong>the</strong> frog. Also, you<br />

will read about him as <strong>the</strong> frog prince, in <strong>the</strong> German Grimm's fairy tales, who persuades a<br />

princess to kiss him so he can turn back into a h<strong>and</strong>some prince, released from a witch’s<br />

spell. I wonder who will kiss Deputy Parkinson in <strong>the</strong> panto?<br />

23


Deputy Queripel is Le Gr<strong>and</strong> Colin, a senior member of <strong>the</strong><br />

Guernsey fairy folk.<br />

The older members of <strong>the</strong> Guernsey fairy folk can get annoyed with <strong>the</strong> boisterous<br />

youngsters. However, Le Gr<strong>and</strong> Colin still feels he can compete with <strong>the</strong> youngsters when it<br />

comes to playing tricks on <strong>the</strong> Guernsey humans.<br />

24


Deputy Roffey plays Giljaguar, one of <strong>the</strong> Finnish Yule lads.<br />

Giljaguar, “Gully-Gawk” comes down from <strong>the</strong> mountains on 13th December– he hides in<br />

gullies, waiting for a chance to sneak into cowsheds <strong>and</strong> steal milk. If children have been<br />

good, <strong>the</strong>n he will put sweets int <strong>the</strong>ir shoes. I am sure Deputy Roffey will enjoy tasting some<br />

creamy Guernsey milk in <strong>the</strong> panto. I expect one of <strong>the</strong> pouques will change into a cow.<br />

25


Deputy Soulsby plays <strong>the</strong> wise old Gran’mere du Chimquiere.<br />

She is a menhir outside St Martin’s church <strong>and</strong> has been around for thous<strong>and</strong>s of years. She<br />

is in charge of <strong>the</strong> Guernsey fairy folk <strong>and</strong> played a big part in deciding how <strong>the</strong> pouques<br />

could look after <strong>the</strong> Guernsey humans during <strong>the</strong> p<strong>and</strong>emic.<br />

26


Deputy St Pier has been given <strong>the</strong> role of <strong>the</strong> mischievous Irish<br />

Leprechaun.<br />

Solitary by nature, <strong>the</strong> leprechaun lives in remote places <strong>and</strong> makes shoes. You can tell<br />

where he lives by <strong>the</strong> sound of hammering. He possesses a hidden pot of gold; if captured, he<br />

might reveal its hiding place. But usually, <strong>the</strong> captor is tricked into glancing away, <strong>and</strong> <strong>the</strong><br />

fairy vanishes.<br />

27


Deputy Le Tissier plays <strong>the</strong> pantomime dame, La Gr<strong>and</strong>e Mabelle.<br />

She may be a senior member of <strong>the</strong> Guernsey fairy folk, but she is just as mischievous as <strong>the</strong><br />

younger ones. She is often pretending to be someone else in order to play tricks on not just<br />

<strong>the</strong> Humans but also <strong>the</strong> o<strong>the</strong>r pouques. In this picture she made a fea<strong>the</strong>r duster to keep<br />

<strong>the</strong> o<strong>the</strong>r pouques two metres away from her, but she helped herself to <strong>the</strong> cockerel’s tail<br />

fea<strong>the</strong>rs whilst he was asleep; he was not pleased!<br />

28


Deputy Trott plays <strong>the</strong> Tio de Nadal<br />

The Tio de Nadal is <strong>the</strong> Christmas pooping log. Young children feed <strong>the</strong> log during December.<br />

On Christmas Day, little Tió is put into <strong>the</strong> fireplace <strong>and</strong> ordered to defecate. The fire part of<br />

this tradition is no longer as widespread as it once was since many modern homes do not<br />

have a fireplace. In modern day, to make it defecate, little Tió is beaten with sticks by merry,<br />

singing children. If <strong>the</strong>y have been good, he poops sweets for <strong>the</strong>m.<br />

29


Deputy Vermeulen has really got into character as a Scottish Haggis<br />

There are two species of Haggis, Lowl<strong>and</strong> <strong>and</strong> Highl<strong>and</strong>. This is a Lowl<strong>and</strong> Haggis – you can<br />

tell as <strong>the</strong> legs are <strong>the</strong> same size. The Highl<strong>and</strong> Haggis has legs of different length so that<br />

<strong>the</strong>y can walk around <strong>the</strong> hills more easily.<br />

30


Deputy Taylor plays that naughty bunny, Peter Rabbit<br />

Peter lives up in Cumbria <strong>and</strong> his rise to fame occurred in <strong>the</strong> Victorian age when a kindly<br />

woman, Beatrix Potter, interviewed him <strong>and</strong> write stories for children telling <strong>the</strong>m all about<br />

Peter’s adventures. Peter has a penchant for lettuce. When he eats it, it has a soporific effect<br />

on him, <strong>and</strong> he falls asleep when he really should be alert. This, <strong>and</strong> <strong>the</strong> fact that he is<br />

always trying to help himself to <strong>the</strong> contents of <strong>the</strong> vegetable garden, often gets him into<br />

trouble.<br />

31


Deputies Leadbetter, Helyer, Mahony <strong>and</strong> Haskins make a<br />

majestic sight towering over us at <strong>the</strong> top of <strong>the</strong> cliffs<br />

playing <strong>the</strong> presidents.<br />

Representing important events <strong>and</strong> <strong>the</strong>mes in US history, Presidents George Washington,<br />

Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln, <strong>and</strong> Theodore Roosevelt were selected to be carved in<br />

<strong>the</strong> hills of Rushmore national park. Each face is approximately 60 feet in height <strong>and</strong> with<br />

noses longer than 20 feet. Their mouths are also about 18 feet wide. These deputies are<br />

obviously destined for a very important part in <strong>the</strong> panto.<br />

32


Deputies McKenna, Prow <strong>and</strong> Mat<strong>the</strong>ws are playing <strong>the</strong><br />

isl<strong>and</strong> fairy folk, <strong>the</strong> naughty pouques.<br />

They have joined P’tite Jeanne pouque <strong>and</strong> her Majesty in sailing across back from <strong>the</strong> Isle of<br />

Man where <strong>the</strong>y went for Tynwald day, pretending to be historic Viking invaders. Aurigny<br />

was full because <strong>the</strong> air bridge was so popular, so <strong>the</strong>y found ano<strong>the</strong>r way to get home. They<br />

were all seasick because <strong>the</strong>y didn't check <strong>the</strong> wea<strong>the</strong>r forecast first <strong>and</strong> sailed into some<br />

rough times. Luckily <strong>the</strong> Queen knew what she was doing <strong>and</strong> took over <strong>the</strong> navigation, so<br />

<strong>the</strong>y did eventually arrive at <strong>the</strong>ir destination.<br />

33


And finally…….. here <strong>the</strong>y all are decorating <strong>the</strong> wassailing tree.<br />

Well, children, I can't wait for <strong>the</strong> panto. The pouques have all year to write it <strong>and</strong> I hope it<br />

will be ready for release next Christmas.<br />

http://www.pouques.gg<br />

@Guernseypouque<br />

34

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