Between me and dad we've have the laptop stripped down completely, the thermal paste replaced, every corner hoovered and blown with air to remove the clogging dust and returns back to one fully functional piece. Huzzah! And it's running cool. Double huzzah!
I also got a new laptop case as my old one is too small for the widescreen. Ooh it's so...padded and safe.
So I feel all achieved and tidy. It was fun. I have yet to run a game on it so I am not 100% sure it will not suffer, but given that it is running cold and silent and nice and all I think we may have solved the overheat-shutdown-OMG problems I have been having.