An Austrian village with an amusingly obscene name has decided to throw in the towel and vote on whether to change it.
The 100 odd residents of Fucking, in Upper Austria, are to vote this week on whether to change their hamlet's name to something less attractive to English-speaking visitors, the Daily Telegraph reports.
The vote comes eight years after the village defiantly voted to keep its name, despite a spate of thefts of its road signs, largely attributed to itinerant snickering Brits. Clearly, the neighbouring villages of Franking, Hucking and Pfaffing just don't have the same problem.
At the time, Mayor Siegfried Hauppl asked visitors to lay off the signs. These had first become prize swag after British and US soldiers passing through in 1945 illuminated the locals as to the English meaning of Fucking.
Hauppl explained back in 2005: "We had a vote last year on whether to rename the town, but decided to keep it as it is. After all, Fucking has existed for 800 years, probably when a Mr Fuck or the Fuck family moved into the area. The 'ing' was added as a word for settlement."
However, the attentions of Anglo-linguists has now extended to swarms of half-naked women having their pictures taken next to the town's road signs, while the cost of replacing stolen signs continues to mount.
Consequently, Fucking's frustrated burghers are considering whether to substitute a g, or even two gs, for the crucial ck sound.
This could broadly solve the problem, though at the expense of making the town a magnet for fans of British satirical magazine, Private Eye. ®