Word reaches us of a truly startling technological advance. One teacher reported to us the high excitement of a trainee who discovered a "wonderful" copying machine at the back of the staffroom.

"It is cheaper than a PC, a projector and a photocopier," the trainee enthused but, incredibly, could also do colour copies. The name of the mechanism? Banda.

For the benefit of younger readers, a Banda is one of those handpowered copiers of yesteryear that used to get staff high on volatile chemicals as they cranked out worksheets. A bit of research reveals they are still very much with us, courtesy of Unigraph plc of Sheffield (pound;400-pound;800 a pop from

We are assured that dozens of schools are still using the machines - it must be the properties of the ethanol duplicating fluid.

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