Local man, Martin Shuttlecock, 27, an aspiring, and dashingly handsome (Providing one squints really hard and lets the imagination run riot.) Olympic Greco-Roman wrestler, was reported to be making a quiet recovery today after a traumatic incident in a London pub, which resulted in him surrendering his treasured fedora hat - which for some obscure reason, known only unto himself, he calls, Tony - to a young lady, eager to take advantage of a photographic opportunity.
"I don't know what came over me!" Shuttlecock sobbed, as he sipped some yellow Belgian Cadbury's 'Drinking Chocolate' (With a creamy head on it.) upon his safe arrival back to the south coast pile he calls home. "I've never given me hat up before. I dunno what came over me."
Independent investigations have revealed that Shuttlecock did indeed travel to London, on Saturday, wearing a long black coat, a fedora, and some acrylic teeth.
CCTV footage then has Shuttlecock descending into the London Underground at Waterloo Station, and attempting to purchase a ticket to travel to Embankment - one stop away.
A Metropolitan Police lip reader, scanning the CCTV footage, related that Shuttlecock was seen to utter:
"Four quid for a fucking single! You're taking the piss! Six pound sixty for a return? Fuck that - I'll leg it."
Subsequent footage shows Shuttlecock walking nervously across Waterloo Bridge, and turning left as he came to the Strand, from whence he wobbled into a pub called 'The Coal Hole.'
Where, purely by coincidence, Shuttlecock bumped into a bunch of extremely talented individuals, who appeared to promoting a book, entitled: The Dorking Review.
Once again, the encounter was captured on CCTV.
MI6 psychoanalyst, Dr George Mantel opined that Shuttlecock - although warmly greeted by a Bolivian despot, a Hounslow historian and his good lady wife, and some French Madamoiselle with a demented husband armed with loads of Dorking Review publicity stuff - was so determined not to buy a round that he disappeared into the Gents, claiming that he was "bursting for a lag."
The Bolivian despot apparently took pity on what New Scotland Yard have described as 'a tight fisted wanker' and got the beer in. Much to Shuttlecock's relief.
According to sources, things went along swimmingly, until the arrival of globally renowned satirista, Mathilde de la Mole, resplendent in jodphurs, and waving a riding crop about with gay abandon. To the bewilderment of several tourists and some of the early evening theatre crowd.
By which time, Mr and Mrs Ken Lucid had disappeared into a typical London pea-souper - probably in anticipation of a nice doner kebab, a shared bottle of Buckfast, and an evening of X Factor, when the picture taking started.
"I was taken aback when Mathilde asked me for my hat," Shuttlecock revealed. "Not even the wife's brave enough to ask me for me hat. Not usually anyway. But Mathilde seemed to have some kind of spell over me - so I just gave it up. I pleaded for help, but the Bolivian despot just smiled at me. The Madamoiselle carried on taking pictures, and the bloke with all the Dorking Review paraphernalia just laughed his bollocks off. I was gutted me! Never had me hat hijacked before. Or should I say, 'Hatjacked'?"
MI6 agents went on to relate that the hat was graciously returned to its rightful owner following the impromptu photo shoot, and that a potentially explosive situation was defused by the arrival of a Queens Park Rangers fan.
Who still thinks that a fiver buys a round, and who thinks that QPR's 4-1 win at the new year at Old Trafford in the 1991/1992 season was just last week.
At which point, Shuttlecock made his excuses and left.
"I'm gutted really," he admitted. "It was when I looked at Mathilde with me hat on - she just looks miles better wearing me hat than I ever could. And she talks right posh. But overall, it was good, and I got home in one piece, so I shouldn't complain. But, having said that..."
More as we get it.