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Delaminate Wales

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My plans to lacquer France, thereby creating an unpopulated replica which could be sited conveniently for the English, have met with some skepticism. Je suis desolée.

Howevertheless, we have a backup plan which will surely be better received.

Wales, as you know, is made of slate. It goes down a very long way, and no doubt cost a fortune when it was new. They don't build 'em like that any more, and most of Wales was built comfortably high above sea level, to leave room for valleys and hills. You really have to admire the workmanship.

Now that England is becoming crowded, though, we ought to think again.

You will doubtless be aware of the Welsh propensity for digging holes ("mynes" as they like to call them). Because they didn't find much in these holes apart from coal and slate (no surprise there, then), most of these holes are now disused. Many of them are also connected by underground tunnels.

So here's the plan. We cap each of these mineshafts, and we start pumping in hydrogen under pressure. Sooner or later, this will inevitably cause delamination of the slate - first locally but then in one enormous blister under the entire country.

Because Wales is basically domed (the bits on the coast are all at sea-level, and it slopes down where it joins England, to avoid creating a trip hazard), the entire top layer of Wales should trap enough hydrogen to be lighter than air. At this point, we simply tow the surface of Wales eastward* using helicopters, until it is clear of the present coastline. We then open some of the capped mineshafts, and release enough hydrogen to set Wales down gently in the sea, along with its inhabitants.

What we're left with, of course, is a Wales-shaped area of clean, unoccupied rock, where Wales used to be. Since the Welsh army will be stuck on the old Wales, we should have no problem claiming this for England and making it habitable.

[Or, to use the more conventional notation, westward.)

MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 25 2015

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       Sp. Dyffwllamineiddio Cymru
zen_tom, Jun 25 2015
  

       Y wys trynsylltwng fwr thw Ynglysh.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 25 2015
  

       Not much of a challenge really, but re-laminating Gondwana Land, that would an accomplishment..
not_morrison_rm, Jun 25 2015
  

       Drop it in the shallow bit of the North Sea, the Goodwin Sands or even better the Dogger Bank ... recreate Doggerland, call it Sheepland ...   

       [+]
8th of 7, Jun 25 2015
  

       What the frack?
Ian Tindale, Jun 25 2015
  

       I think you're missing an opportunity by only stripping off one layer. Work your way down, bit by bit, making sure to attach enough plastic barrels or similar to each layer to keep it floating, and you should be able to double or triple the size of England with no problem.
MechE, Jun 25 2015
  

       A nation only needs so many valleys.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 25 2015
  

       Delaminating whales is probably the best way to get at the good bits inside. I'm sure the Japanese would be very interested in this technology.
Custardguts, Jun 25 2015
  

       I see what you did there.   

       I am tempted (though not very much) to invent and test a whale-lathe for that very porpoise.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 25 2015
  

       // we simply tow the surface of Wales eastward using helicopters   

       Your east or mine?
tatterdemalion, Jun 25 2015
  

       My sedan chair was completing a circuit of the upper north-east orangery at the time, so it's possible that my local east was westward.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 25 2015
  

       Oh, I don't know. At least the plumbing systems would have been compatible.
MaxwellBuchanan, Jun 28 2015
  

       Slate does not float. All will be drowned. Sigh.   

       And if it does float, you will have built a bridge to Ireland. So you will have to learn a new language.
popbottle, Jun 28 2015
  
      
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