Nonagenarian confectionary fan and grandfather of the more famous Charlie, ‘Grandpa’ Joe Bucket has had his Incapacity Benefit stripped after claims about his fitness for work have come under scrutiny.
The self-declared invalid, who claims to have been bed-ridden for several years, had been drawing a generous state allowance to cover living expenses in the property he shares with his family, three of whom also claim to be sick. However, investigations by DSS officers have revealed that Mr Bucket demonstrated normal levels of mobility at the gates of the confectionary giant’s factory, then undertook a lengthy tour of the facilities under the full glare of the world’s media.
An official involved in the case told us: ‘Mr Bucket was either complicit in a long-term benefits fraud, or experienced a miraculous healing of a level usually confined to the holy books. The claimant was, by all account, most sprightly on the factory tour, which involved, among other things, navigating hilly chocolate gardens and getting in and out of candy boats.’
He continued: ‘Subject to a case review, Mr Bucket will likely be required to pay back several years’ worth of allowances, plus fees, and report to his local Job Centre to register his efforts to seek employment suited to his abilities. We will, of course, be investigating the claims of several Bucket relatives.’
The fines will come as a blow to the family after being hit with a massive inheritance tax bill on the newly acquired factory, which itself is haemorrhaging cash duo to economic downturn and new laws protecting foreign-born workers. However, DSS officials said they had no sympathy for the family.
‘We suspected there was something fishy about this family all along,’ the spokesman continued. ‘They claim to be poor and sick one minute, the next minute they are hanging around with the very high maintenance daughter of the CEO of the Salt Corporation, then you blink and they own a factory. Benefits are meant to be a safety net, not some kind of golden ticket.’