A British real estate agent that drew up a map of where to live in the U.K. to avoid “any nuclear impact from World War Three” has apologized for the stunt.
Its publication comes as President Donald Trump ramps up rhetoric against North Korea, today saying that the U.S. military is “locked and loaded” should leader Kim Jong Un “act unwisely”.
The U.K. is well out of range of any threat from North Korea, but property agent eMoov said that capital city London would be “the obvious choice” for any strike on the country.
“Luckily, we’re out of range from any North Korean missiles, but if the world was to descend into nuclear madness the fall out would mean house prices would probably become irrelevant,” eMoov CEO Russell Quirk told CNBC via email on Friday.
“That said, with buyer demand already at explosive levels compared to the ground zero stock levels available, a nuclear war could see these more affordable areas grow in value as demand for a house still standing outside of an impact zone increases.”
eMoov used data from “Nukemap,” an interactive map created by nuclear historian Alex Wellerstein to show what would happen if a nuclear weapon attack exploded in a user’s vicinity.
The firm said that the most affordable option for Brits worried about the “impending end of the world” would be Barrow-in-Furness, Cumbria, which is in the North West of England. Houses in the town would go for an average price of £112,279 ($145,348), the online estate agent said.
It also pointed to areas in Scotland and Wales as prime buying opportunities for British consumers scared of any prospect of nuclear war.
Scottish town Dumfries, which has an average house price of £115,929 ($150,398) and Welsh town Aberstwyth, with an average house price of £175,809 ($228,083), would be the best spots for other nearby Brits concerned by the possibility of a nuclear WWIII.
It also said that areas in the South East of England such as Kent, Essex and Suffolk would be viable options for Londoners “insistent on still buying in the area”.
The agent’s chief executive has since apologized for the move, after the map was called “the worst press release ever,” by a British journalist.
David Blyers, assistant editor at The Times of London newspaper, tweeted an image of the release and said: “Genuinely in shock! Who could have imagined this press release was a good idea??”
eMoov CEO Quirk said that the release was intended as a “tongue-in-cheek” response to the news of an escalation of tensions between the U.S. and North Korea.
“Donald Trump and Kim Jong Un are a couple of joke characters. Their posturing is akin to two drunk uncles at a wedding pathetically threatening to punch each other,” he told CNBC via email.
“We conceived this as a rather tongue-in-cheek release but on reflection realize that our over enthusiasm may be seen as in poor taste by some and for which I apologize,” he added.
UK estate agent draws map of where to live to avoid ‘nuclear impact zone’ – then says sorry