Air passengers arriving at Gatwick Airport were alarmed by a sign welcoming them to Luton, a town some 60 miles away from the airport. A prankster has now claimed responsibility
Image: @ abbdesmond / Twitter)
The 60m (197ft) sign is currently clearly visible to air passengers preparing to land at the UK’s second-largest airport, located just under 30 miles south of central London.
Luton airport, on the other hand, is situated approximately 35 miles north of central London and is therefore a fair old stretch away from Gatwick.
You can imagine the amount of head-scratching among passengers checking out of the window while gathering their hand luggage together.
As previously reported by BBC News, Abbey Desmond, from Great Dunmow, Essex, says she was left in a ‘state of panic’ after clocking the sign while landing.
Now YouTube prankster Max Fosh has claimed responsibility for the stunt, apologising if “anyone has been seriously thrown” by his joke sign.
Get the news you want straight to your inbox. Sign up for a Mirror newsletter here.
Fosh, whose previous pranks have included breaking into the International Security Convention and serving roadkill to unsuspecting food critics, fessed up to the prank during an appearance on the Justin Dealey show on BBC Three Counties Radio.
The jokester admitted: “I am the pesky prankster that has written Welcome To Luton.”
He went on to reveal that some passengers had indeed been left in a muddle, with one woman even messaging him to say she’d been worried about her location as she’d left her car at Gatwick.
Fosh, who says he was inspired by similar pranks played in the US and Australia, continued: “It’s my job to make videos and my videos are all about doing silly things, to put a smile on people’s faces but just to be silly, I ‘m glad this stunt has gone down well. “
Revealing how he pulled the prank off, Fosh added: “I went door-knocking on fields next to Heathrow and Gatwick and a lovely couple said, ‘yeah we’ve got an 80m (262ft) long patch of land we don’t have any use for ‘, so I said’ great can I get my tarpaulin out and start hammering pegs into the ground? ‘. “
The 14 letters, which are 8m (26ft) by 3m (10ft), set Fosh back £ 4,000, with the sign ‘made to last.’
Fosh currently has permission for the sign to stay put for six weeks, and has advised anyone flying into Gatwick during that time to ‘have a look out your left window you should see it about 90 seconds before landing.’
Meanwhile, the previously confused Abbey has since tweeted a pic of the daft sign, so as to ‘give everyone else a laugh’, remarking that ‘it has blown up with everyone blaming RAF Luton.’
The photo has sparked widespread amusement, with one person commenting: “My colleague saw this on a flight we both did on Friday – completely scared her as she thought we were landing in Luton… luckily it was Gatwick.”
Another recalled: “Oddly, I was once on a plane where the pilot announced, ‘Ladies and gentlemen, we have just landed at London Gatwick. Or at least I think we have. Oh, there’s the sign. Thank God for that.’ Must be a Gatwick thing … “
Do you have a prank-related story to share? We pay for stories. Email me at [email protected]