The Cumbria News and Star’s Orchestral Removers in the Dark front page is proper genius


Crime hits the streets of Brampton in Cumbria, as thieves make off with £40,000 of musical instruments in a night time raid.

While this story may pass unnoticed, even with it’s APILN-worthy photograph of the aggrieved shop owner, it’s when Cumbria News and Star sub-editors took over that it all took new levels of madness.

Cumbria News and Star: Thousands of pounds worth of instruments stolen from Cumbria supplier

Owner Ian Warnes: “We are disgusted. We will recover but it’s a bit of a set back.”

But that’s not going to sell papers. But this work of genius by sub-editor Anthony Ferguson will:

That is, we think you will agree, perfect headline work (but only if you are old and know about the band Orchestral Manoeuvres in the Dark, and I am old).

So, of course, I had to alert the band, and this happened:

For the uninitiated, that is front man Andy McCluskey, in a convenience store on his way to Glasgow for a gig, also clutching a packet of jelly babies and some Tunnock’s caramel wafers.

This is – by some distance – the greatest thing that has ever happened to me.

Oh, and radio’s Steve Lamacq wanted to know if we remember another news story which played on a similar OMD pun.

Why yes, we say. Yes there was.

Hereford Times (2001): Four Kestrels Manoeuvre in the Dark

And ten years later…

Spalding Guardian (2011): Four Kestrels Manoeuvre in the Dark

Despite this gorgeous punning, we admit it is nothing when compared to this effort from the Scottish Sun several years ago.




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