The town of Gateshead was reportedly in a state of shock today as the funeral of a notable community loan shark was attended by a single mourner.
“I couldn’t believe it,” said Darren Smike, 48. “Not even his own family turned up to see him put in the ground. Who on earth could feel so close to him that they’d actually show up and be seen paying their respects?”
Speculation as to the suspect’s identity has been rampant throughout the local community. According to The Lampoon’s polling team, 72% of those questioned believe the mystery man to be an apostate of Satan, condemned to roam the Earth until the end of time. A further 19% believe him to be a member of the local Conservative Party.
The question has even been addressed by Gateshead City Council in the wake of the interment.
“This is far more than your run-of-the-mill funeral mystery,” the leader of Gateshead City Council told our reporter. “It hints, in fact, at something dark and brooding at the very heart of our community. An individual that walks our streets, with whom we rub shoulders on a daily basis, has somehow infiltrated our town. Worse, they’re capable of the base depravity of attending the funeral of a loan shark. It’s a warning to us all that something is dreadfully wrong. I mean, besides the whole pandemic and Brexit situation.”
The deceased loan shark, Tommy Lesley, was pronounced dead last Friday after being ceremonially dragged into a giant wooden prison that was then set alight by the Mayoress of Gateshead, who was dressed as a giant cartoon centipede. His family requests that, in lieu of sending flowers, well-wishers should spend an hour intimidating a confused and frightened pensioner.