Geologists have warned Essex County Council that ‘urgent and decisive action’ is required after they discovered that Hadleigh Castle is sitting on an area of ‘significant upwards tectonic shiftual activity’ – in simple terms this is a LIVE VOLCANO. According to the leading academic expert in charge of the investigation, the volcano itself hasn’t erupted for more than 10,000 years, but that the same time recent detected movements show that an eruption could be imminent.

Dr Moltan Browne of the University of North Anglia was called in by local council officials after a number of phone calls came in from concerned members of the public. He said: ‘I was contacted by Essex County Council a week ago after five separate reports were received of ‘rumbling’ from people who were visiting the ruins of Hadleigh Castle and the nearby rare breeds farm. I took a team of geological specialists to the site, and with the latest equipment we noticed a significant rumbling around 10-14 times per hour, with a significant drop in activity later in the day and overnight. Most concerning of all was that the tremors were split in terms of their movement – sometimes they would come from left to right and then they would go the other way.’

He added: ‘Once we had our seismic results, we studied a number of historical documents and found that the so-called Saxon King of Prittlewell once mentioned a ‘Hadlevgh Vesuvis.’ From the Latin, we have translated a terrifying story that shows that Two Tree Island was once a thriving town with thousands of people living on it. The scriptures mention a ‘hot and molten flood’ that destroyed all human and animal life on the island in 900AD, and we are pretty sure that this would have been down to the volcano in Hadleigh. We now have a team of urban volcanographers on site, and we are expecting them to confirm within a few days that Hadleigh Castle is indeed sitting on a live volcano.’

Although a number of residents in Hadleigh have expressed concerns about living next to a live volcano that could erupt at any time, council bosses are more upbeat about the prospect. Jeremy Montague is head of education and child engagement in Castle Point, and he said: ‘This discovery has the potential to bring geology to life for every single child in the borough. Once it has been confirmed, we will be running a competition in all local primary schools to come up with a name for the volcano – perhaps something to do with the London Olympics of 2012 as this would be a great way of extending the legacy from this fantastic event.’

Unfortunately, the discovery hasn’t gone down so well with local business owners. With plans already in place to remove the castle ruins and build a leisure and shopping resort in its place, a number of business lease holders have written to the local council for reassurance that their new retail units won’t be carried away by a river of molten lava during a peak trading period. A spokesperson for the development said: ‘If the live volcano is confirmed, this could pose a number of operational difficulties for the project.’