If you're bored senseless at work and fancy a complete change of scenery coupled with immediate elevation to the monarchy, have a shufti at the website of Barrow Borough Council which is offering one lucky chap or chapess the chance to become the "King (or Queen) of Piel".
The Piel in question is a 20-acre plot "situated off the southern tip of Walney Island three miles southeast of Barrow-in-Furness". It boasts Site of Special Scientific Interest status, a 14th century castle, six former coastguard cottages, and the grade-II listed Ship Inn - the licensee of which is granted the honourary royal title.
The situation has been vacant since the abdication of former king Rod Scarr back in April. Scarr lived on the island with his wife and daughter and told the North-West Evening Mail: "We've seen some bad times, but they're certainly outweighed by the good ones. It's a place that gets in your blood and it has been a wrench to leave."
Since King Rod's untimely exit, the council has charged itself with refurbishing the Ship Inn, and reckons it'll be fit to host a coronation early next year. Accordingly, "formal 'expressions of interest' are, therefore, sought from all persons/parties interested in the future tenancy, subject to terms and conditions to be agreed, of The Ship Inn and Piel Island".
There are some nice snaps of the Piel Island kingdom here, but potential landlords should be warned that it has no mains 'leccy or phone line, is accessible by ferry only on summer weekends, and if you want to get out of the place in a hurry you'll have to wait until the tide goes out and make a dash for it across the exposed sands. On a tractor or similar, naturally.
On the other hand, you might end up spending weeks stuck in a pub by a roaring log fire with no phone to interrupt your beer-fuelled armchair musings. Hmmm... ®
A hearty cheers to Roy Silcocks for alerting us to this unique opportunity.