Parents have reacted with outrage today after the chief of the Southend Tourism and Education Bureau, Sir Monty Blanc, DEMANDED an immediate ban on all parents taking their children out of school during term time for holidays – including replacing the system of fines with a mandatory 20-year prison sentence. He insists that Southend parents should be staying in the town and sampling everything that it has to offer, instead of paying for extravagant trips abroad that take place while their children should be in school.

Sir Monty, one of the country’s most respected experts on education and tourism, has made the recommendation for this new ruling to come into effect from September 2016. He sat down with a Southend News Network reporter earlier today, and he said: ‘I am sick and tired of parents moaning about travel companies hiking up their prices during the holidays – it is well known that companies charge a fortune during this period because hard-working professionals like me simply want to relax on holiday without naughty children running around some all-inclusive resort while high on some sugar-induced Coca-Cola frenzy. They want to save a few quid by going away during term-time, when even more of us older people want some peace and quiet, and they are missing out on all kinds of things like spelling and PE – how can their parents not want them to do PE? It’s madness.’

He continued: ‘Therefore, I am making an official report to the South Essex Council of Education with the recommendation that all term-time holidays for children should be banned with NO EXCEPTIONS. There will no longer be a system of fines in place – just 20-year prison sentences for both parents (and children in some cases). Instead, we will be pushing for a multi-million pound investment in a campaign to market Southend as a holiday destination to people who already live in Southend. The whole area can be reached as an after-school activity, and we have drawn up a simple checklist that will be featuring in the leaflet and website campaign.’

Sir Monty Blanc’s ‘Destination Southend’ Checklist for Holiday Swaps

Walt Disney World – Adventure Island

Center Parcs – Belfairs Woods

New York Shopping – Leigh Broadway

Winter Alps Fun – The Cliffs (Jan-Mar only, sometimes)

Mauritius – Canvey Island

What do you think of the new rules? Will you risk a 20-year prison sentence just to take your children on holiday and not get mercilessly ripped off in the process? Let us know on our Facebook page!