Oddities&Endities

Friday, June 30, 2006

A noisy lot ...


'Too loud' auctioneer faces ban
By Nick Britten
(Filed: 30/06/2006)

An auctioneer could lose his licence after officials warned him that he speaks too loudly during sales.
David Probert, who has been in the business for 40 years, received a letter from Worcester city council demanding that he explain the level of his voice at his poultry market in Hereford.
Mr Probert often has to speak over the heads of as many as 800 people. But health and safety officials said they had received a complaint about the noise and were also looking at how long staff were exposed to clucking chickens.
Daily Telegraph

Smart footwork


Stilts confirm ants count their paces
By Roger Highfield, Science Editor
(Filed: 30/06/2006)

A bizarre experiment that involved putting ants on stilts has demonstrated that they count paces to measure distances.
Drs Matthias Wittlinger and Harald Wolf at University of Ulm, Germany, and Prof Rudiger Wehner in Zurich, altered the legs on a group of ants to test the idea that they use stride length.
Some had pig bristles glued on to their legs, while others had legs shortened by amputation.
First some marched on normal legs to a feeder, where they were placed on stilts and sent home.
The stiltwalkers misjudged the 10-metre distance back and overshot the nest entrance.
When the experiment was repeated with the short-legged ants, they reached their goal too early, the scientists report today in the journal Science.
Daily Telegraph

Arresting fear


Police won't chase if thief has no helmet
By Richard Savill
(Filed: 30/06/2006)

Police refused to chase a thief who had stolen a moped because the youth was not wearing a helmet, the victim said yesterday.
Max Foster, 18, said officers told him they feared being sued if the thief fell off the moped and injured himself.
The thief escaped on the £1,200 moped, which was only insured third party. Mr Foster, of Coleford, Somerset, uses his Gilera 180cc to commute to work in Bath.

Daily Telegraph

Thursday, June 29, 2006

Pass!


Students allowed to set their own exam
By Liz Lightfoot, Education Correspondent
(Filed: 29/06/2006)

A lecturer who wants to engender trust and respect in his students has let them set their own final-year exam.
They were also allowed to take notes into the exam hall in case they could not answer their own questions.
The move is part of a growing shift from "sudden death" exams to "assessment for learning" in which students play a part in judging their performance. But critics say the practice has more to do with the general dumbing down of standards.
Dr Mike Reddy, a senior lecturer in computing and engineering at the University of Wales, Newport, defended his action in The Times Higher Education Supplement today, saying it was better than "the common practice" of recycling old exam papers or giving "strong hints" about content.
Daily Telegraph

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

It's not dead, it's resting!


Hirst's pickled shark is rotting and needs to be replaced. Should it still be worth £6.5m?
By Nigel Reynolds, Arts Correspondent
(Filed: 28/06/2006)

Damien Hirst's pickled shark, the most valuable and iconic symbol of the 1990s boom in conceptual art in Britain, is rotting and is likely to be swapped for a fresher specimen.
The Art Newspaper will reveal this week that Hirst is in talks with the work's owner, Steve Cohen, to replace it before it disintegrates.
The American hedge fund multi-millionaire bought the shark for £6.5 million less than two years ago.
According to The Art Newspaper, the 14ft tiger shark, suspended in a tank of formaldehyde, is deteriorating rapidly because of the way it was originally preserved by Hirst.
The solution is now murky and the shark is showing considerable signs of wear and tear and has changed shape.
The installation - Hirst gave it the title The physical impossibility of death in the mind of someone living - was created in 1991.
The physical impossibility of death . . . was commissioned from Hirst by Charles Saatchi for £50,000.
Daily Telegraph

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Flying against the stream


Smokers' airline ready for take-off
By Kate Connolly in Berlin
(Filed: 27/06/2006)

A German businessman has founded an airline dedicated to smokers.
Smintair, or Smokers' International Airways, aims to cater for smokers who feel excluded in an age when all major airlines have banned the habit.
A Dusseldorf-Tokyo service is due to begin in October and is expected to serve mainly Japanese businessmen.
Smintair's founder, Alexander Schoppmann, a 30-a-day man, said: "There are no laws banning smoking on board. The airlines have made these rules themselves because no-smoking planes are cheaper. It means you don't have to change the air filter system so regularly."
Daily Telegraph

Monday, June 26, 2006

It's raining money ...


Town praised for returning 'free' £20 notes
By Richard Savill
(Filed: 26/06/2006)

A mayor has praised the people of his town for their honesty in returning thousands of pounds that a man threw into the air.
Shoppers and motorists at a pedestrian crossing in Aberystwyth, west Wales, rushed to grab the cash a week ago, seconds after a man shouted: "Who wants free money?"
Police arrested the 40-year-old man for a suspected drink-driving offence and said later he was receiving medical treatment.
Police, who appealed to people to give the money back, have not disclosed how many of the £20 notes have been returned, but a spokesman said it was the "vast majority".
Police have also not disclosed how much money was thrown into the air but estimates have put it at between £5,000 and £20,000.
Daily Telegraph

Friday, June 23, 2006

No Snooze is Bad News


Japan gives the nod to power naps
By Julian Ryall in Tokyo
(Filed: 23/06/2006)

The power nap is catching on with legions of weary Japanese.
Good Sleep Salon Napia, which offers beds to rent in Tokyo's Nihombashi business district, opened in late 2004 and at first people would give their work colleagues the slip to go to it. But the owner, Akira Nishimura, said they were now arriving in groups.
"About 70 per cent of the people who come to us each day are men," he said. "They are tired and stressed out because they get to work early and go home late."
For 800 yen (£4) customers can have 40 minutes of shut-eye in a luxurious reclining chair. Most opt for a maximum of 30 minutes snoozing, which is designed to boost mental and physical energy. Any longer, Mr Nishimura says, and there is a risk of waking up tireder than before.
In a sign that the habit is catching on Toyota, the car manufacturer, will no longer wake people who fall sleep at their work station during the lunch hour. Paul Nolasco, a Toyota spokesman, said: "We turn the lights down low, which makes it more conducive to sleeping."
And some schools have also introduced a post-lunch snooze for students, who traditionally work very hard.
Daily Telegraph

Thursday, June 22, 2006

Water Water Everywhere (except in the pipes)


Thames Water could face fine of up to £140 million
By Rosie Murray-West
(Filed: 22/06/2006)

Thames Water faces a fine of up to £140 million after announcing a huge increase in profits yesterday while its pipes leak almost 200 million gallons of water every day.
The German-owned company, which has a hosepipe ban in place and has now applied for a drought order, made £346.5 million last year, an increase of 31 per cent.
"Given its current leakage performance, we are concerned that the company may not meet future leakage targets or its security of supply commitments," the Ofwat spokesman said.
Thames Water lost 72 billion gallons of water last year, enough to fill Windermere. Ofwat said its poor performance was contributing to shortages.
Daily Telegraph

Potemkin, eat your heart out!


Anne misses window of opportunity
By Auslan Cramb, Scottish Correspondent
(Filed: 22/06/2006)

A council preparing for a royal visit went a step further than the traditional lick of paint when it installed windows and curtains in boarded-up houses.
The move was welcomed by residents of the rundown estate, but minutes later, the boards were back up.
The work was carried out on the Mar Policies estate in Alloa, Clackmannanshire, for a visit by the Princess Royal to a new community building.
Craig Holden, a councillor, said Princess Anne was left with a false impression of an area where unemployment is three times the average.
Vicky Brown, 20, said: "For the first time in years, the street looked fantastic, but five minutes after she left workers boarded the windows up again."
Daily Telegraph

Wednesday, June 21, 2006

Nothing like a fair trial...


Saddam's lawyer killed by 'terrorists'
(Filed: 21/06/2006)

A defence lawyer for Saddam Hussein, the ousted Iraqi dictator on trial for crimes against humanity, has been shot dead in Baghdad.
Khamis al-Obeidi, an Iraqi and Sunni Arab who represented Saddam and his half brother Barzan Ibrahim in their eight-month trial, is the third of the former leader's lawyers to be assassinated.
Khalil al-Dulaimi, Saddam's chief defence counsel, said Mr Obeidi was killed after being abducted from his home at 7am by men wearing police uniforms.
The assassination comes as the defence team prepares to launch their closing argument on July 10.

Daily Telegraph

Love Thy Neighbour?


Seven year-old attacked for wearing England shirt
(Filed: 21/06/2006)

Your view: have relations between England and Scotland deteriorated?
A seven-year-old boy has been attacked in Scotland for wearing an England football top.
Hugo Clapshaw had been playing a game of football with his father in Edinburgh at the weekend when a man shouted abuse and punched him.
Lothian and Borders Police today called the attack "cowardly and pathetic".
His father, Damon Clapshaw, a 34-year-old finance worker from Edinburgh, told the Scottish Sun newspaper: "Hugo was just wearing a football top, that's all he did wrong.
"Has the Scotland-England rivalry come to this?"
He told how the man ran up to his son in the park on Saturday and shouted expletives at him.
Hugo was punched in the head before the man turned on Mr Clapshaw, punching him to the ground and kicking him.
After the attack, the man apparently shouted: "This is Scotland, not f****** England."
Hugo told the newspaper: "The man whacked me very hard. He was a lot bigger than me. I am still going to wear the top. My mum bought it for me because I'm supporting England."
A police spokesman said: "We will not be advising people not to wear England shirts."

Meanwhile, police in Aberdeen were hunting a man who attacked a disabled driver yesterday because he was wearing an England shirt and flying a St George's Cross from his car.

Daily Telegraph

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Feeling seedy?


Arctic mountain is a Noah's Ark for world's seeds
By Sam Lister

A vault deep in the permafrost will keep millions of grains safe in the event of a global catastrophe
WORK began yesterday on a “doomsday� vault buried in the Arctic permafrost that will become the guardian of 10,000 years of agriculture, protecting millions of seed samples in the event of a global catastrophe.
The project, dubbed the Noah’s Ark for seeds, will catalogue and preserve more than three million species to ensure the long-term survival of the world’s vital food crops.
The vault — on an island on the Svalbard archipelago, 620 miles (1,000 km) from the North Pole — will be carved into the side of a mountain where the temperature is unlikely to rise above -3C (27F), even in the event of severe global warming. It will be surrounded by concrete walls 1m (3ft) thick.
The precious contents will be accessed by a single door using one of six master keys held by international bodies such as the United Nations. Nature, in the form of blizzards, ice floes and marauding polar bears, will provide security.
The feasibility study concluded that, under proper conditions, seeds for most main food crops could remain viable for hundreds of years at the Arctic site. Others, including key grains, could survive for thousands of years.
Times OnLine

United We Stand ...


Travel guide criticises bland, sqalid UK
(Filed: 20/06/2006)

A new travel guide to the British Isles has criticised Buckingham Palace for being "as bland as it is possible to be".
The Rough Guide to Britain calls the Queen's home a "graceless collossus" that visitors "pay through the nose" to see.
It also takes a swipe at the gap between the rich and poor in the UK.
Britain was a place where "multiple homes are the rule for some and squalid homelessness the norm for others", the Rough Guide says.
On the nation's identity, the guide says: "If you were planning a country from scratch, you would never force England, Scotland and Wales together into a single United Kingdom."
Wales is "resentful of English dominance" while Scotland is "happiest as far away from both as possible". According to the guide: "Nobody can agree on what it means to be British."
Daily Telegraph

Monday, June 19, 2006

Party Poopers


Parents worry themselves sick over parties
By Sarah Womack, Social Affairs Correspondent
(Filed: 19/06/2006)

Competitive parents are making themselves ill with worry about whether the parties they organise for their children's birthdays will be as much fun as those thrown by other parents.
A survey of children's birthday trends reveals that parents spend an average of £129 on their child's birthday party, and are three times more likely to experience a stomach upset in the run-up to the big day than their child.
Children questioned in the survey, however, would happily give up the lavish party and go back to basics with a game of pass-the- parcel or musical chairs.
While mothers and fathers are opting for more high maintenance gifts and gadgets such as PlayStation2s, Game Consoles (28 per cent) and iPods (20 per cent), children are more excited by traditional toys.
Outdoor gifts such as bikes, skates and skateboards are hugely popular with nearly half of children. Boys hope to receive sports kit or sports equipment (49 per cent) and want to play football at their party (42 per cent). Nearly half of all girls would like a trampoline and 51 per cent want to spend their party dancing.
Other party activities for energetic and lively kids include bouncy castles (45 per cent) and 10-pin bowling (39 per cent). But 34 per cent of children still enjoy simple party games such as pass the parcel and nearly a quarter (23 per cent) like musical chairs.
The majority of adults think their child would prefer to hold their party at a large hired venue such as a swimming pool. But children would actually rather stay at home, with 59 per cent wanting their best friend around for some fun rather than a big organised party with the whole class.
Daily Telegraph

Sunday, June 18, 2006

Table Top Sales


Village hall break-ins, the wedding season and the strange case of 300 missing tables
By Karyn Miller
(Filed: 18/06/2006)

They are disappearances that have left the police baffled for more than a year. In a series of daring night-time raids on village halls, 300 large trestle tables - together with cutlery and tablecloths - have been stolen.
The latest raid took place when thieves forced their way into East Barkwith village hall, near Louth, and made off with 20 tables, plus matching tablecloths.
Christopher Wilson, 50, the vice-chairman of East Barkwith parish council, said: "It's ever so quiet around here and there isn't much crime but we had been warned that this might happen.
"The marquee theory makes sense - these aren't the sorts of stolen goods that you can pass around in the pub."
Sunday Telegraph

Friday, June 16, 2006

It may be a hole, but it's mine...


Gold man told: you're in a hole, stop digging
Last updated: 15-Jun-06 00:09 BST

A CALIFORNIAN digging for gold in his front garden got "carried away" and ended up with a 60ft hole. Henry Mora, 63, began digging after his gold detector reported a hit. He only intended to go down three or four feet, but the detector kept hinting he was getting closer.

Authorities fenced off the house and ordered him to hire an engineer to safely fill the hole.
New Scotsman

The bare truth


So much for naked ambition
Last updated: 15-Jun-06 00:09 BST

AN AMERICAN who ran naked through the streets to try to persuade his girlfriend to marry him got more than he bargained for when he was chased and shot at.
The woman told him that she was not sure if she was ready for marriage, according to police in Ann Arbor, Michigan. The man responded that taking risks was an important part of life and, to prove his point, jumped out of a first-floor window and ran naked across the street.
He spotted a couple walking and hid in some bushes to avoid them. A 28-year-old man spotted bare feet and drew a handgun.
The naked suitor ran away, but the armed man gave chase and fired a shot.
A resident called police, who arrested the gunman for aggravated assault and carrying a concealed weapon.
New Scotsman

Thursday, June 15, 2006

TWO for the price of ONE


Speed trap driver moved 40mph sign to 'prove' he wasn't breaking the limit
By Nigel Bunyan
(Filed: 15/06/2006)

A motorist is facing jail after trying to evade a speeding ticket by removing a 40mph road sign and attaching it to a lamppost 10 miles away.
John Hopwood, 44, then took a photograph of the sign in its new location and submitted it as evidence.
He came up with the ruse after being caught speeding at different locations on April 4 and 5 last year.
On the first occasion, in Manchester, a speed camera caught him driving at 48mph in a 40mph area, while on the second, in Rochdale, he was recorded travelling at 41mph in a 30mph zone.
Hopwood realised he had no chance of avoiding the first fine, but thought a little ingenuity might enable him to evade the second. He took a photograph of the sign in its true position, then removed it and took a second photograph of it in Albert Royds Street, Rochdale.
Both photographs were submitted to police as evidence that in the second offence he was only marginally above the speed limit. For good measure Hopwood, of Hazel Grove, Stockport, wrote to the city's central ticketing office to say he felt "angry, upset and shocked".
Unfortunately for him police brought in a university academic to prove that the two supposedly different signs were actually one and the same.
Daily Telegraph

AND

• A motorist was spared prison yesterday because he has dementia and cannot remember that he is banned.

Keith Edwards, 57, of Blackley, Manchester, now has 30 convictions for driving while disqualified. Yesterday, Llandudno magistrates gave him a 12-month conditional discharge after hearing that he had been stopped in a hire car at Conwy.
Daily Telegraph

Seriously though, this is ART


Artist laughs his head off at the RA
By Sally Pook
(Filed: 15/06/2006)

David Hensel could not help but chuckle when he went to see his sculpture on display at the Royal Academy.
At first, after wandering through the Summer Exhibition, he concluded that it was nowhere to be seen. But eventually he found it. Or rather, he didn't.
What he did find was the sculpture's empty plinth and wooden base displayed as "Exhibit 1201".
Mr Hensel had never considered the empty plinth a work of art in itself. But the exhibition selectors evidently did. So, too, did visitors, who pronounced it beautiful.
No one seemed to notice, or mind, that the sculpture itself, a laughing head entitled One Day Closer to Paradise, was missing. "What apparently happened was that they had become separated and the selectors judged the empty base a good enough sculpture in its own right to include it in the show," said Mr Hensel.
Daily Telegraph

Tuesday, June 13, 2006

Saddled with a sentence


Thief late for court stole bike
(Filed: 13/06/2006)

A burglar was behind bars yesterday after stealing a schoolboy's bicycle so he could get to court on time.
A judge at Reading Crown Court heard that James Robin, 18, was late for an appearance before magistrates on burglary charges when he stopped a 16-year-old boy riding a BMX bike along a footpath and threatened to stab him and throw him off a bridge unless he gave him the cycle and a mobile phone.
Robin, of Reading, Berks, admitted two counts of robbery and was sentenced to 39 months in a young offenders' institute.
Daily Telegraph

Monday, June 12, 2006

Raising the Dead


Pets to Be Exhumed From Cemetery
From the Associated Press
June 12, 2006

About 1,000 animals, including dogs, cats and monkeys, must be exhumed from a Bay Area pet cemetery because their burial plots are on leased land that the owner wants back.
One-third of the cemetery belongs to the real estate firm Cypress Abbey Co. and has been leased informally since the 1960s, C'de Baca said.
A formal agreement struck in 1986 allowed the cemetery to use the land rent-free on the condition that the graves would be exhumed and the land returned in 20 years.
C'de Baca said he believed that he would be able to buy the land at the end of the term.
"I probably should have been more clear" to pet owners about the status of the land, C'de Baca said. "But I didn't know he was sincere about not wanting to sell."
LA Times

Friday, June 09, 2006

A spoke in your wheel


Cycle path where cyclists have to get off and walk
By Paul Stokes
(Filed: 09/06/2006)

Users of a new £100,000 cycle path are being warned to dismount because part of it is too narrow.
North Yorkshire county council used money from a Government fund to encourage environmental transport to refurbish the scenic route near to where Captain Cook embarked on his voyages.
Workers spent two months resurfacing the footpath to encourage cyclists to use it as well as pedestrians. But weeks after its completion, signs have been put up along a 200-yard stretch asking riders to dismount for safety reasons.
Daily Telegraph

Thursday, June 08, 2006

An animal with a lot of soul


World's leggiest animal marches out of the past
(Filed: 08/06/2006)

Eight decades after it was thought to have become extinct, scientists have reported the rediscovery of the world's leggiest animal.
Illacme plenipes, Latin for "the acme of plentiful feet", has up to 750 legs.The species has been spotted in a tiny patch of San Benito County, California, the first time it had been seen since 1926, report Mr Paul Marek and Dr Jason Bond of East Carolina University, Greenville, North Carolina in the journal Nature.
Although there are 10,000 known millipede species, none actually possesses the mythical 1,000 legs.
Females definitely wear the (presumably rather complicated) trousers in this species: the three adult females described here each have more than 660 legs, compared with between 318 and 402 for the four adult males and fewer for the five juveniles.
The variation may be because these creatures continue to add to their collection of legs even after reaching sexual maturity, as they grow new segments on their bodies.
Daily Telgraph

The Pigs Have Flown


Village sign 30 years late and going nowhere
By David Sapsted
(Filed: 08/06/2006)

For 30 years villagers had wanted a road sign to direct lorry drivers to a nearby bacon factory.
It belatedly went up this week. But there was no rejoicing among the residents of Elmswell, Suffolk.
The factory is closing down tomorrow.
Daily Telegraph

Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Hop on a plane...


To Stem Widespread Extinction, Scientists Airlift Frogs in Carry-On Bags
By BRENDA GOODMAN
Published: June 6, 2006

ATLANTA, June 5 — Of all the things airport security screeners have discovered as they rifle through travelers' luggage, the suitcases full of frogs were a first.
In a race to save amphibians threatened by an encroaching, lethal fungus, two conservationists from Atlanta recently packed their carry-ons with frogs rescued from a Central American rain forest — squeezing some 150 to a suitcase — and requested permission from airlines to travel with them in the cabin of the plane.
A waterborne form of chytrid fungus is marching down the spine of the mountain range where they live. The skin of infected animals sloughs off in layers, and within two weeks, they die.
The chytrid fungus is thought to play a large role in the worldwide disappearance of amphibians, a trend terrifying to experts, who say it would be the first loss of an entire taxonomic class since the dinosaurs.
New York Times

Tuesday, June 06, 2006

Business is dead...


Brothels and cemeteries don't mix, say Australians
(Filed: 06/06/2006)

Australian local governments have passed legislation to prevent brothels from opening near cemeteries.
Local governments in the northern state of Queensland have called on state authorities to establish a 220 yard exclusion zone around cemeteries.
It follows a decision by a council in Ipswich, just outside the Queensland capital Brisbane, to reject a proposal for a brothel to be built across the road from the local cemetery.
Paul Pisasale, mayor of Ipswich, said cemeteries were places for quiet reflection by families who should not have to put up with "a brothel going on next door".
"It's totally inappropriate. There's a place for brothels and a place for cemeteries and we don't believe the two mix," he said.

Daily Telegraph

Monday, June 05, 2006

It's Wednesday, so it must be Rome...


Sightjogging anyone?
By Web Editor. Filed under News from Italy, Holidays
on November 28th, 2005

We are sure this happens to everyone all the time. You find yourself in Rome - just have a couple of hours at your disposal - and are not sure whether to spend them in the gym working out or sightseeing. Well - you don’t have to make that choice anymore!
The ever resourceful Romans have come up with a whole new take on sightseeing in Rome, which I am sure will have traditionalists jumping up and down with rage. In short, the latest trend for the fitness-conscious visitors of Rome is a guided tour of Rome whilst jogging.
One of the routes claims to take you in 90 minutes and 5 miles down the Spanish Steps, through the city’s very heart and across the Tiber River, you get to Castel S. Angelo and the magnificent St.Peter’s Basilica.
“An absolutely striking route, not to be missed on your first visit to Rome.�, says the Sightjogging website.
Another route takes you in 60 minutes through 2000 years of history round the Imperial Forums and the Colosseum.
The trip is handled by multilingual trainers jogging tourists along predefined routes.
ITALY Magazine

Friday, June 02, 2006

Almost Hamster Jam


Hamster survives industrial shredder
(Filed: 02/06/2006)

A lucky hamster has escaped virtually unscathed after passing through an industrial shredder.
He passed along a conveyor belt and then through a giant shredder, which can tear a cooker or washing machine to pieces in seconds.
He then survived a rotating drum and vibrating grids before he was discovered in a sorting area by astonished staff, who named him Mike.
The ordeal, which probably lasted around four minutes, left the rodent with nothing more than a sore foot.
Daily Telegraph

Put Through the Hoop


Dorneywood croquet sends sales soaring
By Amy Iggulden
(Filed: 02/06/2006)

John Prescott may be a more likely ambassador for bacon butties and HP sauce than croquet, the sport that speaks of summer lawns and stately homes.
But the Deputy Prime Minister, who was pictured wielding a wooden mallet as he prepared to take charge of the country last week, appears to have been unexpectedly effective in his new role.
As he contemplated life without Dorneywood, the grace-and-favour Buckinghamshire house he has had to give up, Asda announced yesterday that sales of its garden croquet sets had soared by 300 per cent. The country's second biggest supermarket chain, revealed that 6,000 shoppers had bought its £9.87 and £2.96 garden kits, up from 2,000 in the corresponding week last year.
Daily Telegraph

Between a Rock and a Hard Place...


Parish upset by moving tale of Brighton rock
By David Sapsted
(Filed: 02/06/2006)

It seemed a good idea at the time to uproot a five-ton boulder from a park and dump it in the middle of a green to deter youngsters playing football there.
It was only after the major operation to shift the lump that historians pointed out to bureaucrats they had moved a historic boundary stone, used for centuries to mark the border between two parishes.
So officials at Brighton City Hall have had to order that the 6ft long boulder be put back.
Council officials originally moved the stone because youngsters playing on the green next to St Peter's Church kept kicking footballs against the windows. Someone had the bright idea of relocating the boulder from the Wild Park, about a mile away.
It was only when it appeared on the green that historians and residents rounded on the council, pointing out that the boundary stone was even marked as such on Ordnance Survey maps.
A council spokesman said that they had moved the stone to make the green a "less inviting football pitch".
Just one problems remains: when workmen returned the boulder to its original location, they put it down back to front.
Daily Telegraph

Thursday, June 01, 2006

Special Delivery


Dyslexic postman could not read mail
By Stweart Payne
(Filed: 01/06/2006)

A dyslexic postman threw away mail because he found it difficult to read the addresses on envelopes, a court heard yesterday.
Letters for addresses in Virginia Water, Surrey, were found at various places in Hampshire. Almost 200 items were found in Four Marks and 134 others near Alton and in Ryan Sainsbury's car and home in Southampton. Some letters had been opened but nothing had been taken.
When the mail was found, Sainsbury, 22, was suspended from his job, which he had held for seven weeks.
Daily Telegraph

Off the Rails - well, almost...


Teenage joyriders take 49-ton shunting engine for a spin
By Paul Stokes
(Filed: 01/06/2006)

Two youths took a 49-ton locomotive on a 15-minute joyride around a busy railway terminal as staff worked around them.
They arrived on BMX bicycles, climbed into the 350bhp Class 08 shunting engine and started it up.
They then set off, stopping to change points manually to switch tracks, as they drove up and down Tinsley marshalling yard, in Sheffield.
It was only when a security guard decided to check who was at the controls that they stopped and leapt out before pedalling off.
Det Sgt Paul Kazimierczyk said: "I have never come across anybody taking a joyride on a loco."
Daily Telegraph