It might take weeks to get the police interested in investigating a real crime but if you put a promotional ape in a mobility scooter playing a mock siren it’s a completely different matter, as Who’s Bingo found out.
In a classic case of what’s known in promotional circles as ‘guerrilla marketing’ an ape riding a mobility scooter to publicise an event at Who’s Bingo has been warned as to its future conduct by police in Cumbria.
Nigella the Gorilla, felt the long arm of the law when it was reported by a member of the public in Barrow. Cumbria police responded immediately to the threat to law and order by deploying two officers who eventually caught-up with Nigella outside the local Tesco stores in Barrow’s Hindpool Road. They warned the ape that because it was playing fake emergency service style sirens it was in fact guilty of impersonating a police officer, Adam Robinson of Who’s Bingo told local newspaper the North West Evening Mail: “We had sirens on Nigella’s mobility scooter and a person reported her to the police saying that she was impersonating a police officer. That’s why she was stopped by officers and told not to use the siren. We were told if she was to have her siren on again her mobility scooter would be confiscated.”
He added: “We use Nigella to promote our events – sometimes she’s a nun or on a mobility scooter. It gets people talking and laughing. Life’s too short to take offence to a gorilla on a mobility scooter.”
Nigella is already known to Barrow’s finest. Earlier in the year she was the subject of an ape hunt after a member of the public reported a gorilla on the loose, an incident that led to an appearance on the Judge Rinder ITV show.