The new blue passports, which have been treacherously produced in the EU, will not be reaching these shores any time soon. Dover customs jobsworths have refused the first consignments because they are the wrong size.
It transpires that the new blue passports measure precisely 8cm by 12 cm. The specification stipulates that they should measure roughly 3 inches by 4 inches. Predictably, the tabloid press have seized upon this gaffe with great delight.
“Who wants a blEU passport?” squeals the Daily Mail. “We MUST take control of our passports NOW!” proclaims the Daily Express. Many items of calamitous bad news have been cheerfully buried in small print on page 73 as a result.
Cursory digging reveals that many of the now-useless decimal passports lack pages entirely. This is not a problem, as they are unlikely ever to be used, but they fail to communicate the vital illusion of global travel.
The ‘executive’ version of the passport does indeed contain pages. These pages are not made of the usual vellum, as this is too expensive. Instead, a parchment made from the skins of grateful unicorns has been used.
Including pages does increase costs, though. So corners have been cut to save costs. The passports will come without corners to get all dog-eared.
“This is a national scandal!” hooted passport expert Bergen Dee. “The incompetent EU cannot even get basic units of measurement correct. It is vital that we leave the EU as soon as possible, if not before that!”
Bergen Dee riffed about the use of Imperial measures being the first step towards reclaiming the Empire, before turning his ire on the EU again. “If you can’t even use a ruler properly, how on earth can you be taken seriously?” he shouted. “Britannia rules the waves!”
Don’t mention the fact that it would be much cheaper and simpler to retain EU passports. But that’s not Brexit. Britannia waives the rules.