The UK project to build a functioning time machine is behind schedule, admitted a government minister today. 'It was originally a joint US/UK collaboration, but once the Americans realised just how much irony is needed in a functioning time machine they decided they were well out of their depth,' he said. The minister produced what he described as a 'reversed Gantt chart' that showed the project starting eighteen months after the completion date. It was noted by some of the correspondents at the briefing that the start date occurring after the scheduled finish date wasn't an unusual event in UK projects, however they agreed that this was almost certainly the first time it had been a design parameter.
It was noted that the funding for the project, estimated to be several billion pounds at 2030 rates, hadn't been ring-fenced yet. 'We expect our funding proposals to be thrown out in 1999,' said the minister, noting that he could blame the Blair government for that particular piece of irresponsible policy 'when it happens.'