LSE tort exam includes question about ‘Nigel’ and ‘Donald’ drinking beer and crashing a plane into the River Thames

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By Thomas Connelly on

Exclusive: ‘Boris’ also gets knocked off his bike

London School of Economics (LSE) students sitting a tort exam last week answered a problem question about characters named “Nigel” and “Donald” crashing an aeroplane into the River Thames.

The exam (screenshots below), sat by first year law students on Friday, opens its fictitious scenario with two men named “Nigel” and “Donald” consuming “several pints of imported Belgian beer”. Thirst suitably quenched, the intrepid duo — who appear to be inspired by their famous political namesakes — decide to use Nigel’s light aircraft as part of a “publicity stunt” over Westminster.

Unfortunately, things don’t go to plan, and the banner Nigel was hoping to unfurl becomes entangled in the aeroplane’s propellers causing it to plunge into the River Thames. He is able to swim to safety, while Donald is ignored by police offers and suffers from hypothermia.

It’s probably worth noting at this point that the real Nigel Farage narrowly avoided death under similar circumstances. In 2010, as part of a UK Independence Party campaign, he took to the skies in Northamptonshire in a light aircraft displaying a banner. When the banner’s ropes became entangled around the aeroplane’s tail, the pilot was forced to make an emergency landing in a field. The outspoken MEP suffered a broken sternum, fractured ribs and a punctured lung.

Nigel Farage being helped from the aircraft wreckage back in May 2010

But LSE’s seemingly politically-charged question doesn’t stop there. Witnessing the incident from the back of a taxi, a character called “Chris” opens the vehicle door in order to get a closer look. However he fails to spot a man named “Boris”, who is riding “carefully in the cycle lane”. Could this be a subtle reference to ex-Lord Chancellor Chris Grayling, who knocked a cyclist over with a car door in Parliament Square earlier this year? Boris — who may or may not be inspired by our bumbling blonde Secretary of State for Foreign Affairs, Boris Johnson — wasn’t wearing a cycle helmet and suffers a minor head injury as a result.

Commenting on the exam’s unusual storyline, one LSE law student, wishing to remain anonymous, told Legal Cheek:

It made me laugh in the exam but was perhaps a little insensitive when considering Nigel Farage was seriously hurt in a plane crash a few years.

LSE declined to comment.

This isn’t the first time the law school’s lecturers have embraced their creative side during exam season. This time last year an LSE IT law exam question went viral on image sharing website Imgur. Drafted by professor Andrew Murray, the question — which racked up over 22,000 views in under 24 hours — featured characters from US comedy Silicon Valley.

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