A plea has gone out from the Isle Of Wight Tourist Office, warning people not to take unofficial souvenirs home following the loss of a major tourist attraction. The remains of "The Needles" were smuggled out in a white van sometime yesterday according to Mrs. Doris Peacock, who saw the theft from the upstairs window of a nearby cafe and "hunt the pirate" centre she was cleaning at the time.
The Needles was a row of three "stacks" of chalk that rose out of the sea off the western end of the Isle of Wight, UK, close to Alum Bay. The Needles Lighthouse which stands at the outer, western end of the formation was not stolen.
The "rock formation" took its name from a fourth needle-shaped mound called Lot's Wife that was allegedly made by God to punish Mrs. Lot, the wife of a local heavy drinker, for looking behind her as He destroyed some other tourist attractions circa 1000 B.C. The remaining rocks are not at all needle-like, but the name has stuck.
The Needles were featured on the 2001 TV programme, "Seven of The Most Boring Natural Features of the U.K." as one of the most uninteresting former attractions of Southern England.