This Tiny UK Island Is Looking For A King Or Queen To Reign Over Its Pub & Ancient Castle

"Landlord, Pub Manager and King/Queen of Piel" would look pretty great on a resume...

Senior Global Editor
This Tiny UK Island Is Looking For A King Or Queen To Reign Over Its Pub & Ancient Castle

Have you always wanted a job title that makes you sound like a ruler from Game of Thrones?

You might want to throw your hat in the ring for a new job posting on Piel, a tiny island in the middle of Morecambe Bay in the U.K.

The island's only business, the Ship Inn, is hiring a new landlord, pub manager and monarch to reign supreme over the 50-acre plot, which is also home to a 14th-century castle (although it's worth noting that the monarch title is only symbolic).

The castle is a bit of a fixer-upper (i.e. it's falling apart), but local tradition holds that whoever runs the pub will also rule the entire island. The landlord gets to be the King or Queen of Piel — once they've completed a little ritual involving a helmet, a sword and getting doused with a bucket of alcohol.

The council in nearby Barrow-in-Furness has launched a search for the next person to run Piel Island, and it sounds like a sweet gig if you don't mind the isolation.

The island hosts fishing trips and seal and bird-watching tours each year, so the Ship Inn gets plenty of visitors to keep the landlord busy. It's also a beautiful spot to live, with stunning views of the ocean and the nearby Lake District.

"Even if you're pissed out of your head the views from Piel are pretty amazing," local tour guide John Murphy told The Guardian. "I must have slept on every blade of grass on that island, drunk or sober, and I just love it."

With an endorsement like that, who wouldn't want the job?

But it does have its drawbacks, including unpredictable weather, long hours, inconsistent access to land and loneliness, according to Murphy.

"You can't just nip across to Tesco for a loaf of bread when you're on Piel Island," Murphy said. "You'll need to have dedication and a strong passion for isolation and peace and quiet. It takes a special personality."

Murphy might sound like the perfect heir to the throne of Piel, but at 73, he says he's too old to take on the role.

The Barrow Borough Council is looking for someone to run the place for 10 years. They didn't say how much it pays, but it would be hard to beat the perks.

According to the island's website, past kings have had "Knights of Piel" in their service, and at one point the island even had its own prime minister, mayor and full royal family.

The whole "king" thing dates back to the late 1400s, when Lambert Simnel, a pretender to the throne of England, briefly landed on the island with his rebel army.

Simnel got his butt kicked in a huge battle with the real king just a few days later, and monarchy is likely to have begun as a "slightly mocking homage to this event."

So if you've always wanted to rule your own island — or to be part of a centuries-old inside joke — this is your chance!

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