Roger Williams, a school janitor from Dunstable, is in hiding tonight after remarks he made online about a cute video of a cat playing with a ball of string have brought him death threats and general warnings for the ongoing safety of his family.

After the video appeared on his Twitter home feed Mr Williams tweeted the poster back, but only after they had prompted him to respond in a series of additional tweets: ‘It’s a cat playing with some string for goodness sake. What is so special about that?’

However seemingly in the eyes of thousands of cat lovers, this simple and neutral response was taken as a heinous act, tantamount to him dismembering the animal live on-air in a Webcast and then rustling up a curry with its remains.

One cat lover, forty-one year-old spinster, Fiona Peters, fumed: ‘People like this monster make me sick and he’s brought this on himself if you ask me. Why couldn’t he simply have given it five thumbs-up, twenty five smilies and fifty heart emojis like the rest of the country has done? I have twenty cats and they are all beautiful creatures. They are certainly not aloof and ‘up themselves’ until mealtimes either I’ll have you know.’

Meanwhile and until the tension eases Bedfordshire Police has posted armed guards around Mr Williams’ house night and day, and the county’s Chief Commissioner has appealed directly to the public; ‘For God sake, if a video of someone’s cat or kittens comes up on your Facebook wall or Twitter home feed just like it and move on.  Believe me, it will safer for all concerned in the long run.’