is on to unmask Reading's very own Batman and Robin
used to clean up the mean streets of Gotham City – but
now the Caped Crusader and his loyal sidekick are taking
on a new challenge.
right folks! Batman and Robin have been on the streets of
Whitley, saving damsels in distress, scaring wrongdoers
and even chasing naked men from football pitches.
Like a re-run of Del Boy and Rodney’s dash through
Peckham, the crime-busting pair have been spied sprinting
along Northumberland Avenue, but unlike the Only Fools and
Horses television pair, these two have been real-life
we made a Bat Call to our readers to find out the
crime-busters’ true identity after they were spotted
shooing off a pair of cheeky streakers at the Jack Taylor
TRS Trophy football final at about 5pm on Easter Sunday.
And the Bat-Phone rang off the hook with other sightings.
Michelle Kirby, from Whitley, was stranded
in Whitley Wood Lane when her Peugeot 206 ran out of
petrol on Easter Sunday.
But our Batman and Robin appeared out of nowhere to save
the day and push her car to the nearest petrol station.
“They just appeared. I saw them running down the road in
Batman and Robin outfits – I was laughing so much,”
she said. “It was like a scene out of Only Fools and
Horses and they stayed in character the whole time.
said, ‘I’m Batman, I’m Robin’ and I said, ‘No,
you’re not’ and asked them if they were going to a
fancy dress party but they said they were going back to
After seeing Miss Kirby to safety, the pair disappeared
along Basingstoke Road.
And Whitley Wood man Ray Cox, 61, spotted the caped
crusaders at about 11.30am after doing his
“I said to my wife, ‘It would make it a better and
safer place with these men’,” he said.
“There are so many muggings in Whitley and these two
running down the road really looked great – get these
was quite a broad chap. They would scare a few muggers off
and I’d feel safer in Whitley.”
shy caller, who wished to remain anonymous, claims to have
been helped by the pair, who faced down somebody who was
And another anonymous caller, who may know more than he
let on about the duo’s real identities, reported a
He suggested the pair had been among demonstrators who
clambered to the top of the Engineers Arms pub in Whitley
a few years ago in protest of a proposed name change for
“I knew of them because some time back they did a
rooftop protest which got on the television – something
to do with changing the pub’s name to The Fisherman,”
“So these two sprung into action – they were
He added: “I also saw them on Sunday running down the
streets of Whitley around lunchtime – out of
Northumberland Avenue on to Whitley Wood Road.
“Then at the cup final they ordered the streakers off
the pitch and then disappeared, jumped into a car and
He could not confirm if this was the Batmobile and refused
to give up the names.
Will our dubious duo be back on the streets of Whitley
again? Will Boy Wonder get a pair of green tights to fit?
And most importantly, who are the masked duo?
Tune into the Evening Post for our next exciting episode
to find out.
And meanwhile, call the Bat-Phone on (0118) 918 3009 with
sightings – or to let us know if the whole thing is a
holy hilarious prank Batman!
and Robin: The movie
City’s Batman and Robin may be stars of the silverscreen,
but Whitley’s very own caped crusaders are now movie
stars in their own right.
The dynamic duo first captured our hearts chasing two
streakers off the pitch at a Sunday league football final
on Easter Sunday.
Now the heroic pair have filmed Batman Five: The Mini
Movie for a satellite TV channel.
The feature, filmed by the company Reality TV, will be
screened this autumn.
It re-enacts some of the duo’s exploits around Reading
and reunites the pair with a damsel in distress they
helped in Easter.
Michelle Kirby was left stranded in Hartland Road when her
car ran out of petrol and the superheroes were on hand to
push it to a petrol station.
Batman said: “The TV work was brilliant. Robin and I
took to it like ducks to water.
“What was really great was as we were filming on
Wednesday cars driving by were tooting their horns, waving
and screaming from their windows.
“It was unbelievable – kids were even stopping to have
their photos taken with us.”
Keep an eye on your Evening Post to find out exactly when
the movie will be aired.
Happy Hour Robin
Caped duo hit the roof to save pub
NOT content with just saving
damsels in distress, Batman and Robin have now turned
their attentions to the doomed Engineers Arms.
The caped crusaders – who have made sporadic appearances
over the past year doing good deeds – emerged from their
Batcave to scale the roof of the pub in Whitley Wood on
Sunday to show their support for the fight to save the
boozer from demolition.
The 30-minute protest quickly attracted vocal support from
people living nearby, including a dozen excited children
brandishing ‘We love you Batman’ placards.
In an exclusive interview with the dynamic duo’s
favourite paper, Batman hailed the protest a success.
He told the Evening Post: “The local people who make
this community tick have fought hard to save the pub from
demolition so myself and Robin thought it was our duty to
do something to help.
If it means getting on a roof to help the great people of
Whitley to fight the villains who want to close our pub
than we will get on every roof in Reading.”
Owner New Wood Inns plans to pull down the pub to make way
Steve Heard, leader of the Engineers Arms Action Group,
said: “We have done everything to make the owners change
their minds but they will not listen to us.
“We have offered to clean up the pub and manage it for
them but it seems they are determined to knock it down.
“We want to thank Batman and Robin for helping us get
this issue noticed, this pub is an integral part of the
community and we won’t let it go without a fight.”
The stunt is part of the long campaign by the group to
save the Engineers Arms.
New Wood Inns director Dominic Stokes was adamant that
despite protests and squatters, the pub will not be
Mr Stokes said: “There is no chance that we will be
using the site as a pub. It is not a viable option. We
bought the pub in good faith to run it as a successful
business but the locals have not treated it with any
respect and after recommendations from the police we
decided to close it.
“We are a pub company but The Engineers Arms was like
throwing money down a black hole so we have decided to use
the land for another development.”
The pub shut its doors last November after a campaign of
violence and vandalism that saw Thames Valley Police
called to it 44 times in a year.
Campaigners were given renewed optimism after borough
planning councillors unanimously refused the redevelopment
plans last November.
Councillors said getting rid of the pub – no matter how
troubled it had been – would deprive Whitley people of
an important leisure facility and the development was too
New Wood Inns has not reapplied but restated its intention
to push forward with plans to build a housing development
on the site.