by our environment correspondent, Val Kano.
Tensions amongst river-front communities on Merseyside were high today as news reports revealed that controversial emergency services tests are to be implemented this week-end.
The tests, which are a part of the North West region's commitment to meet the needs of residents during an apocalypse, will include a simulated full-size tsunami which residents, many of them elderly, fear will damage their livelihoods for up to several years.
Romanian salvage engineers, currently working on dis-mantling the Newbodome, also insist that their work/life cycles may be severely imbalanced during the marine disruptions.
The wave, set to break records for water displacement, will be created by igniting a huge explosive device underneath Bootle, sending hundreds of thousands of tons of debris into the Mersey and making way for a new shopping mall due to start construction immediately.
'Emergency services are confident this exercise will raise awareness of large bodies of water moving at incredible speeds towards local residents', proclaimed Merseyside Fire and Rescue Service’s spokesperson, Eammon Igga, yesterday. 'We've been out in a boat all day yesterday and we're all systems go, quite frankly'.
Shifting imperceptibly along the outer edge of a nuanced, 19th-century ottoman, Mr. Igga went on to dispel accusations made yesterday in Burst's restaurant, Liscard, that the tests were just an excuse to demolish vast sections of the Newbodome, now deemed unsafe. 'Our crack team of scientists, engineers and diggers ensure us that disruptions to trade and public order will be minimal. However, we do warn that wave simulations may extend the shore line into neighbouring counties and that residents should stay indoors during this time'.
Local conspiracy theorist and ex-humanitarian aid volunteer, Abdul A-Teem, 17, disagrees. 'The local council, aided by the notorious Toxteth Illuminati, plan to create a massive new water park', said Mr. A-Teem from the sumptuous interior of a late '80s Marina. 'They aim to flood the Wirral with the tsunami, thus bringing the Dee Estuary and the Mersey together in one body of water. Anyone caught in the middle is just collateral damage.'
Mr. A-Teem's friend and fellow conspiracy theorist, Kanye Putt-Butterinson, 44, agreed. 'What he said', he said.
In preparation for the staged catastrophe this weekend, both ships have been evacuated from their moorings on the river while several Beatle souvenir shops near the Pier Head have been surrounded by sand bags.
Donkey rides along New Brighton beach are postponed until after the deluge and parents are being warned to keep a tight hold of their children while picnicking in Vale Park or Harrison Drive this weekend. Returning day trippers wanting to take advantage of the free life-jackets will find it situated at either New or Seacombe Ferries.
NEWS FLASH: Health and safety officials have given the go-ahead to the council-sponsored OAPs vs. JSAs marathon scheduled to take place on New Brighton Dips that day.