May 27 (UPI) — Merry Old England is known for many things — Big Ben, David Beckham, fish and chips, dedicated soccer fans, black cabs and the Beatles, for example — but the country also has a lesser-known side as a home for odd news.
The English have made numerous appearances in the odd news pages, with incidents ranging from snack biscuit spills to unusual animal rescues to viral airport livestreams.
Here are 10 of the oddest odd news stories to arise recently from the home of King Arthur:
Police in the Erewash District of Derbyshire, England, responded to an unusual traffic hazard in early April when a truck traveling on Ilkeston Road in Sandiacre lost its load of McVitie’s biscuits in the middle of the roadway.
“Please bear with us this evening whilst we try and ‘digest’ this issue,” police tweeted. “A lorry load of McVitie’s finest have decided to abandon ship causing a slight obstruction!”
Crews from multiple fire stations responded to a Devon, England, home in late March when a bull wandered away from its field and ended up stranded in the home’s backyard swimming pool.
Firefighters used a harness and heavy equipment to hoist the bovine back to dry land. The soggy bull was not injured.
A major snowstorm in February made for hazardous conditions at London’s Heathrow Airport — and popular entertainment for YouTube channel BigJetTV.
The channel livestreamed plane landings at the airport with color commentary from channel founder Jerry Dyer. Dyer said the channel hit a record 200,000 viewers on a single livestream as people around the world watched the planes slide around on the tarmac.
British auction house Sworders said it was contacted by a woman who bought a wood and wicker chair for just under $7 at a thrift store in Brighton, England.
The chair was identified as the 1902 work of Austrian artist Koloman Moser, a teacher at the Vienna School of Applied Arts who designed the seat as a modern reinterpretation of a traditional 18th-century ladder-back chair. The chair was auctioned for $21,874.12 in January.
Officials in Maldon, England, ordered a freshly-painted road to be repainted again in February 2021 when local residents noticed the phrase “NO ENTRY” had been misspelled as “NO ENRY” on the pavement.
“We’re on’T To iT,” the Maldon District Council joked in a Facebook post.
The RSPCA responded to an Orpington, England, home in April when a fox cub got its head stuck through the middle of an old, discarded tire.
The baby fox was removed from the tire and the fox and its sibling were taken to a specialist wildlife center to be cared for until they are old enough to live on their own in the wild.
Facebook apologized to members of groups based in Plymouth, England, when posts mentioning a local landmark called the Plymouth Hoe were incorrectly flagged as containing foul language.
The name of the landmark comes from the Anglo-Saxon word “hoe,” which describes a sloping ridge shaped like an inverted foot and heel, but Facebook incorrectly flagged the term as misogynistic hate-speech and removed the posts.
Edward Draper and son Rowan Draper broke a Guinness World Record at Turk’s Head pub in Twickenham, London, by hanging up 10 items of clothing in 56.87 seconds.
The father and son duo said they spent hours of practice time selecting the best clothing items to use for the attempt and the fastest techniques to get them onto hangers and a rack.
Tamara Atkin, a researcher from Queen Mary University of London, was examining a book published in 1528 when she discovered the binding contained a fragment from the long-lost poem, Siege d’Orange.
The poem tells the story of the siege of Orange, a city in the Rhone Valley, and is part of a cycle of epic narrative poems about the legendary hero Guillaume d’Orange. The fragment found by Atkin is believed to be from a version published in the late 13th century.
Douglas Smith of Hertfordshire, England, put his green thumb to the limit when he harvested 1,269 tomatoes from a single plant stem, breaking the Guinness World Record most tomatoes from a single stem/truss.
Smith, who had broken the same record just a few weeks earlier when he harvested 839 from a single stem, said he studied multiple books on gardening and took soil samples for laboratory analysis to prepare for his record attempts.