Despite positive feedback from their exclusive firework-inspired business launch outdoor dinner last year, the Lough Neagh Dolphin-Watchers Tour Firm (LNDWTF or WTF for short) have announced an annual loss of 600% or £800’000, with the company ceasing trade immediately.
WTF also confirmed their office mysteriously went on fire just before the announcement and are waiting the outcome of a ‘big claim’ because of the suspected arson, with the finger firmly pointed at the Shark-Watchers’ Society at Toome.
WTF’s CEO Patrick McCabe admitted the take-up on the whole dolphin experience was rather disappointing:
“Everyone loves dolphins we thought. Well, apparently in East Tyrone they don’t. We never even had one customer since the website booking mechanism went live on 25th May 2014. We thought maybe it was bad Internet connections or something but after canvassing outside chapels in recent Sundays we now realise there’s no appetite for dolphins around here. The eels have it sown up.”
WTF’s European Union grant of £1m does not have to be repaid as a recently publicised loop-hole exempts EU funded businesses from paying the money back if they have been in existence for over 12 months.
McCabe maintains there is no money to pay back anyway:
“The £1m is well gone. We had to install glass bottoms in our boats as well as loads of hi-vis jackets in case we fell in. It’s just a big pity people aren’t into dolphins around here. The Lough Neagh species exhibits a falcate dorsal fin, a prominent beak, strong social bonds and is very acrobatic and capable of great bursts of speed in the water. This species frequently rides the bow wave of our tour boat in Hawaii. They just seem to be more shy here. Maybe they’re afraid of the whales.”
When asked for photographic evidence of the Lough Neagh dolphin, McCabe momentarily showed us a picture of something floating in the lough in the distance, probably the stump of a tree or something.