Officials at the Prison Service are counting their lucky stars today following the discovery of a massive escape tunnel built by inmates at St. Michael’s prison.
The prison that occupied the basement of St. Michael’s Tower was finally closed in January 2011. Had it remained open for just a few more weeks it is likely that most of the eighty prisoners would have escaped.
Officials from the Prison Service were able to take a couple of brave journalists on a guided tour of the tunnel, that runs all the way to the bottom of the tor, follows the path of the nearby A361, branches east under nearby fields, passing under the A37 near Lower Wraxall and finally stops a hundred yards short of Castle Cary train station.
In a statement to the press, Prison Service spokesman Gerald Manquez said; “It seems that prisoners were planning to join their tunnel to the underground pedestrian walkway at Castle Cary train station, where they would then mingle with passengers. But as the tunnel grew ever longer the job of transporting and disposing of the hundreds of tonnes of waste material took its toll on the prisoners. It explains why Glastonbury Tor grew by 30 metres in the last decade. It also explains why the prisoners were so happy when we announced the closure of the prison. They were now able to enjoy a virtual holiday in one of Britain’s less mystical prisons – free of the responsibility of running an industrial scale mining operation.”
Many visitors to Glastonbury Tor are unaware that the huge telescope is mounted on the top floor of St. Michael’s Tower, gazing skyward.
Glastonbury Chakra Boatworks Limited (GCB), the company responsible for the construction of Glastonbury Marina declined to make a formal comment, but we did catch their Chief Executive Jane Mellor today who confirmed that they are well ahead of schedule, and that subject to final planning approval, the marina should be fully excavated next month.
But when he talked to us today, cosmologist Kirsten Denier from Glastonbury Observatory looked dejected; “We have spent the last 23 years mapping the skies above Glastonbury engaged in important research into the effect of distant astral bodies on horoscopes. We have made major scientific breakthroughs. For example, in 2009 we proved conclusively that Sagittarians really do come into some luck when Neptune is in the harmonic ascendant third quadrant. But since they started night-dredging at Glastonbury Marina our discoveries have become few and far between, and the predictions we make in our horoscopes have become terribly inaccurate.”
Local residents are up in arms about the dredging that started on the new Glastonbury Marina this weekend.
The fear is that because this is ahead of final planning permission sign-off by the Glastonbury Planning Committee the town might find itself with a huge lake but no marina.
It’s not all bad though – keen sailor Roger Ginty of Shipton Terrace in Glastonbury has been sitting in his 26 foot yacht this afternoon making sure it’s all shipshape and Bristol fashion. He’s waiting for the new marina to open for business because his craft has been marooned in Glastonbury since 1986 and this will be his big chance to sail back from the marina into the Bristol Channel, along the canal that is to be completed by 2015.