In amazing scenes unwitnessed in the annals of British history (um, I think so anyway), Somali pirates have kidnapped the entire town of Greenodd in Cumbria and flown all the residents to Mogadishu, the Somalian capital.
British police believe the capture took place on Wednesday night just as residents were settling down for the evening.
The clockwork precision of the act involved about twenty pirates knocking on doors and then producing armalite rifles to coerce the citizens from their homes. The hostages were then made to embark on commandeered buses and driven to a private airfield near Keswick where a stolen commercial jet was waiting to fly them out of Britain for their eastern African destination.
British authorities have received a verbal demand from the pirates for 500,000 pounds to be paid in exchange for the hostages freedom. Police are said to be considering the offer but won't rule out anything (even suggesting a smaller ransom).
British Prime Minister Gordon Brown has said that these pirates have a "damn nerve" and he has offered himself as a hostage in exchange for letting the Brits go (at the minute his advisers have told him to abandon this move).
A message has been sent to the pirates advising them that they have nine days to release the Greenodd residents or else they'll cop it big time.