Millions of Britons fell off their chairs in surprise today, on hearing the astounding news that UK train fares were a bit pricey.
The national rail-users' group Passenger Focus announced their astonishing discovery this morning, saying that annual season tickets for short journeys were up to 88% more expensive than in France - the second most expensive country in Europe. Some long-distance journeys were theoretically cheaper, admitted the watchdog - but only for one lucky passenger who happened to book at the exact moment when the affordable seat on the entire journey appeared unexpectedly in the booking system.
A three-ton ginger spokestom for the Association of Train Operating Companies explained the fares structure in unusually succinct terms, telling reporters to "Piss off." The same sentiment was also expressed by the Transport Secretary and stripper, Lord Adonis - although, when threatened with a wet towel, he pointed out that rail fares had actually gone down in relation to the cost of a loaf of bread.