As the world gets ready to welcome another new year, a group of scientists have claimed that, contrary to popular belief, there will be nothing new about the year 2011 and that it is in fact a ‘cheap knock-off’.
The team of boffins from Carlisle Polytechnic’s Institute of Time and Space said the belief most people hold about a new year starting every 31 December was a myth.
Dr Brynmore Bryson, who led the 20-strong research team, said: ‘Every year, people hold parties and celebrate what has come to be called “The New Year”.
‘But, after extensive research, we made a startling discovery – 2011 will not be a new year but simply a cheap knock-off of previous years.’
The findings of the Dr Bryson’s work have been published in Time Magazine and have sent shockwaves through the scientific community.
Some leaders in the field of space time physics have hailed the research as the most important since Einstein’s theory of relativity.
The idea that the world has been living in fake imitation years has also brought previous years that were thought to be brand new under scrutiny, with some scientists suggesting that 2010 could in fact be a copy of 1992 or even 1929.
New Year celebrations to mark the end of 2010 around the globe are now in doubt, with the world-famous street party in Edinburgh the first to be cancelled.
Dr Bryson continued: ‘A lot of people will have been looking forward to 2011 as they see a new year as a fresh start and a benchmark in their life as they try to improve themselves.
‘But our research suggests otherwise. There will be no new car, new job or new girlfriend. There will be no greater chance of a mortgage or a nice holiday in Bermuda.
‘And there certainly won’t be any progress in this great human ambition of world peace. None of that.
‘Instead, you’ll still have the same rubbish car, the same job you hate and you’ll still be spending Friday nights with the Next catalogue.
‘2011 will just be like 2010, although, as with most cheap imitations, probably worse.’
Prime Minister David Cameron has ordered an immediate investigation, while in the US President Obama has ordered the FBI to track down whoever has been producing the fake years as a matter of urgency.
North Korea, where time is counted differently, has yet to respond, although intelligence sources have said they were concerned that the rest of the world may have to adopt the Stalinist state’s system to avoid using copied years.
When asked for his reaction to the study, which cost approximately £100m, celebrity physicist Stephen Hawking said: ‘What a bunch of twits.’