It survived the French invasion of 1545 and even the influx of five Polish would-be migrant workers, who were eventually seized and burned at the stake in Freshwater in 2009. Now, however, the pristine coastline of the Isle of Wight is facing its most deadly menace ever after an estimated 500,000 barrels of utterly appalling crap from charity shops leaked from an underground bunker near Portsmouth into the Solent.
‘Unknown to the public, the charity shops in London have long recycled unsold tat down the M3 corridor,’ said Blue Cross shops spokesman Michael Davenport. ‘The best second hand clothes tend to get snapped up in Chelsea. After a few months, the remainder is shipped to Guildford and what doesn’t go from there is moved on to Basingstoke. Eventually, anything that can’t be given away for nothing even in Southampton is buried in a lead-lined underground bunker and forgotten about.’
The Environment Agency is now spraying chemical dispersants onto the novelty Christmas jumpers, George at Asda trousers and knitted tea cosies to make them biodegrade in the sea. However, it has admitted that a ‘nightmare scenario’ is now looming, because the slick is believed to contain large quantities of ‘seriously toxic’ and virtually indestructible material, including Katie Price autobiographies, Royal Doulton figurines of princesses on a swing and, allegedly, DVD compilations of out-takes from Top Gear.
‘Industry and the media must take a long, hard look at themselves once this is all over,’ commented Green Party MP Caroline Lucas. ‘We have to stop selling CDs of Ibiza club music to returning holidaymakers, who invariably give it to the local charity shop one week later when they realise that they just can’t listen to it when they aren’t off their tits on drugs.’
Residents of the Isle of Wight have been urged to stay indoors, seal their windows and make a cup of tea. Anyone who finds a hardback version of Jeremy Clarkson’s newspaper columns is being advised not to touch it but to report the location of the finding in triplicate to East Cowes Police Station, marking their letter ‘Absolutely Bloody Typical’.