The Headline Challenge is played every weekday morning on the BBC Tees breakfast show (95fm). Peter Barron comes up with a funny story from around the world and challenges listeners to produce a better headline than his. Points are awarded for the best headline each day and it's double-points for a song title, film, play or book.

WEEK 1

JAN 4: A married builder, called Alberto, dug a tunnel between his home in Mexico and his lover's house. Whenever her husband was at work, he'd nip down the tunnel for an illicit encounter with 'Pamela', but was caught red-handed when the husband came home early one day. Alberto vanished behind the settee and it was only then that the husband discovered the secret tunnel. He followed it to Alberto's house where a confrontation led to fisticuffs and the police being called.

PETE: A FIGHT AT THE END OF THE TUNNEL (0)
BBC: TONIGHT, I EXCAVATE MY LOVE FOR YOU (2)

JAN 5: Tiawanese taxi driver Tu Ching Liang is offering passengers free rides in return for them singing a karaoke song during the journey. He's been so succcessful, he's now launched a YouTube channel with all the recordings.

PETE: SOMEWHERE UBER THE RAINBOW (2)
BBC TEES: CARPOOL KARAOKE (2)

JAN 6: A romantic man has gone viral after his first date ended up with him sliding uncontrollably down a muddy hill 'like Bambi on ice'. Kieran Essen was on the date in Edinburgh when he started to slide away from his date who filmed his embarrassment.

PETE: HE WAS A DATE SLIPPER (2)
BBC: THAT'LL BE THE DATE THAT I SLIDE (4)

JAN 7: Teesside kids use great-grandma's dentures to make their snowman smile.

PETE: GRIN AND BRRRRR IT (2)
BBC TEES: DENTURE WISH YOUR SNOWMAN WAS COLD LIKE ME? (6)

The Northern Echo:

JAN 8: A postman has been awarded nearly £40,000 for unfair dismissal after he was sacked for urinating in a layby during his round in Watford. Roo Rawal was dismissed for gross misconduct after being filmed in mid-wee by a member of the public but he successfully argued that he knew 12 other postman who'd all urinated on duty without being sacked.

PETE: SPLASH ON DELIVERY (2)
BBC TEES: URINE THE MONEY(8)
 

WEEK 2

JAN 11: A dog walker at Winlaton on Tyneside called police after discovering what he thought was a human toe poking out of the soil in a field. A police search team was despatched but, rather than human remains, it turned out to be a potato with a mushroom growing next to it.

PETE: FEET AND TWO VEG (0)
BBC TEES: MIXED-UP-ME-TOES-IES (1)

The Northern Echo:

JAN 12: An Indian takeaway has launched a samosa and spicy nan wrap into space before it crashed landed in France. The Chai Walla, in Bath, used helium filled balloons to transport the food on its epic journey.

PETE: I'M A ROCKET NAN (4)
BBC TEES: ONE SMALL STEP FOR NAN - A GIANT LEAP FOR NANKIND (2)

JAN 13: Honey the calf loves nothing more than snuggling up with her canine friends and watching TV programmes after being taken into a family's home. The Northmore family, in Ivybridge, in Devon, have been pampering 10-months-old honey since she was born unwell after a caesarean section.

PETE: IS IT TIME FOR MOO-NIVERSITY CHALLENGE? (4)
BBC TEES: MOO THE KEYHOLE (4)

JAN 14: Simba, the cat, has been revealed as an escapologist thanks to a secret camera. Simba's owner Amy Kennedy couldn't work out how Simba kept appearing in rooms around the house in Chester, despite being locked downstairs overnight. She set up a camera and discovered that Simba had learned to jump up onto door handles and use his weight to open the doors.

PETE: MISSION IM-PUSS-IBLE (8)
BBC TEES: CURIOSITY THRILLED THE CAT (4)

JAN 15: Megan Kennedy asked her two grandmas to fill in as bridesmaids after Covid got in the way of her plans for a big wedding to Thomas Cahoon. Megan originally planned to have 10 bridesmaids but was limited to just 15 guests - so Gillian Holloway, 80, and Mary Kennedy, 90, filled in at the wedding in Dulwich.

PETE: STAND BY YOUR NAN (8)
BBC TEES: SOMETHING OLD (5)

WEEK 3

JAN 18: A cockatoo has helped with a marriage proposal in Australia. Euli delivered a note to a woman called Erin during a bird show at Australia Zoo, in Queensland. It contained a proposal from Erin's boyfriend, Jesse, who dropped down on one knee.

PETE: JUST THE COCKATOO OF US (2)
BBC TEES: WHEN COCKATOO BECOMES ONE  (0)

JAN 19: The Kraft Heinz company is looking to recruit a graduate to spend a year driving round American cities in "The Wienermobile" - a vehicle shaped like a giant hot dog.

PETE: CITY BANGER VAN, CITY-CITY BANGER VAN. CITY BANGER VAN, CITY-CITY BANGER VAN (4)
BBC: HOTDOG, JUMPING FRONT - ON THE WAY TO ALBUQUERQUE (2)

Oscar Mayer Wienermobile

JAN 20: A pigeon, named after Joe Biden, has been reprieved after facing a death sentence. Joe was going to be killed after being found in a Melbourne backyard because a ring on his leg suggested he'd flown in from Oregon, 13,000 miles away. He would have been a risk of spreading disease but further inquiries have concluded he's an Aussie bird, so he can live.

PETE: STAY OF EXE-COO-TION (4)
BBC: FAKE COOS (3)

JAN 21: A British birdwatcher has stumbled across buried treasure of 1,300 gold coins from the Iron Age during a walk in the countryside. The coins date back to the reign of warrior queen Boudica. Neither the birdwatcher nor the location are being identified.

PETE: AFTER THE GOLD THRUSH (4)
BBC: FROM RAGS TO TWITCHERS (4)

JAN 22: Mechanic Adrian James spends every spare penny on his bizarre hobby - making rabbit suits so he can live a double life as a bunny. Being furloughed from his job has given the Milford Haven dad-of-three more time for his obsession, and he now has seven rabbit suits costing £12k.

PETE: YOU KNOW I'LL BEG, STEAL OR BURROW (4)
BBC: SHOW ME THE BUNNY (5)

WEEK 4

JAN 25: Scottish butcher Simon Howie has marked Burns Night by sending a haggis to the edge of space. Simon launched the haggis on a weather ballon from the village of Dunning and it soared 20 miles above the earth before landing back in Scotland.

PETE:  THAT'S AN OFFAL LONG WAY TO GO (0)
BBC: TO BOLDLY GO WHERE NO CLAN HAS GONE BEFORE (1)

The Northern Echo:

JAN 22: Colorado animal lover Seleta Nothnagel has spent $10,000 to pay for heart surgery to save her pet chicken's life. She loves Blue the chicken so much she even sleeps beside her.

PETE:  OOH, YOU'RE MY BEST HEN (2)
BBC: PECK-XUAL HEALING (1)

JAN 27: An American robotics company has released a video showing four of its robots dancing. The video by Boston Dynamics, based in Massachusetts, has gone viral.

PETE: YOU ARE THE DANCE MACHINE, YOUNG AND SWEET ONLY SEVENTEEN (2)
BBC: I’M IN THE MODE FOR DANCING (3)

JAN 28: A bedding company, called Sleep Junkie.com is advertising a job in which the lucky applicant will earn $3,000 for testing mattresses for two months.

PETE: MAKING THE BEST OF A BED JOB (2)
BBC: GET YOU MONEY FOR NODDING AND YOUR KIPS FOR FREE (5)

JAN 29: Bud, the crisp-loving parrot, is able to fly again after being put on a diet at an RSPCA centre in Norfolk. Bud got so overweight eating crisps that he kept crashing every time he tried to take off.

PETE: ON A CRASH FLY-ET (3)
BBC: POLLY-UN-FATURATED (5)

WEEK 5

FEB 1: Florida guitarist Frank Maglio has taught his pet parrot, Tico, to sing along to songs by The Beatles, Led Zeppelin, and Bon Jovi.

PETE: LET IT BEAK (0)
BBC: WHILE MY GUITAR GENTLY TWEETS (2)

FEB 2: The old Gaiety Cinema, in Thirsk, has been converted into a car showroom.

PETE: GONE WITH THE WINDSCREEN (2)
BBC: A FISH CALLED HONDA  (4)

FEB 3: Employees of a software firm in Santa Barbara, California, moved out of their headquarters to work from home during the lockdown - and 20,000 bees have now taken over their empty offices.

PETE: WORKING NINE TIL HIVE (2)
BBC: STAY IN A HIVE – BY THE BEE GEES (8)

FEB 4: New York musicians Elizabeth Hart and Ivan Diaz Mathe have recorded an album made up of the sounds made by the in-utero movements of their unborn baby.

PETE: UTERUS ARE EVERYTHING (THE SWEETEST SONG THAT I CAN SING, OH BABY) (8)
BBC: LOVE IS ULTRASOUND ME (8)

FEB 5: A mum has revealed on Facebook how she was left mortified by her little boy while he was having a Zoom home-schooling lesson. She was on the toilet when he burst in and asked her to unmute his iPad - with the camera on!

PETE: THE BOTTOM OF THE CLASS (8)
BBC: HOME STOOLING (9)

WEEK 6

FEB 8: A cow, named Posh Spice, has sold for a record £262,000 at in auction in Carlisle after being bred at a farm in Shropshire.

PETE: VIVA FOR HEIFER (2)
BBC: WHEN MOO BECOMES ONE (2)

FEB 9: Norwegian athlete Jonas Felde Sevaldrud has unofficially broken a world record after running a half marathon, barefoot in the snow, in 1 hour 44 minutes and 58 seconds.

PETE: SNOWHERE TO RUN TO (2)
BBC: SNOW FARRAH (3)

FEB 10: The Royal Navy has launched an investigation into allegations that submarine officers have been caught making sexy movies at Faslane, in Scotland.

PETE: TWENTY THOUSAND LEAGUES UNDIE THE SEA (2)
BBC: FIFTY SHADES OF BATTLESHIP GREY (7)

FEB 11: Texas lawyer Rod Ponton has become an internet sensation after a computer filter turned him into a cat during a virtual court hearing.

PETE: MIAOW DO YOU PLEAD? (2)
BBC: THE BARRISTER CATS (9)

FEB 12: An animal shelter in Kentucky is offering those who've been dumped the chance to get their revenge and mend their broken hearts. For a donation to Lexington Humane Society, you can have your ex-lover's name written on a cat litter tray "to be dumped on".

PETE: LITTER SWEET SYMPATHY (2)
BBC: BREAKING UP IS HARD TO POO (11)

WEEK 7

FEB 15: Romance is alive and well in Otley, where personalised pork pies have been a big hit for Valentine's Day at Middlemiss Butcher's shop.

PETE: I LOVE YOU CRUST THE WAY YOU ARE (0)
BBC: MY PIES ADORED YOU (2)

FEB 16: Ukrainian couple Alexander and Viktoria have been welded together with chains around their wrists for three months to test the strength of their love. They have to choose whether to use gents or ladies public toilets, and they have special zips to enable them to dress and undress without having to do contortions.

PETE: ALL THE LOVE IN THE WELD (2)
BBC: THAT’S THE LOCK, THAT’S THE LOCK, THE LOCK OF LOVE (2)

FEB 17: Novelist Cathy Hayward, of Brighton, has revealed that she does the gardening when she sleepwalks - and has found herself naked in the back garden, watering her plants.

PETE: A DOZE BETWEEN THORNS (3)
BBC: BARE NAKED DAISIES (2)

FEB 18: An ice hockey match that lasted day and night for 252 hours has set a world record and raised $1.8m for cancer research. Forty players were involved in the match in Alberta, Canada, and more than 5,000 goals were scored.

PETE: I'M UP ALL NIGHT TO GET PUCKY (5)
BBC: THE MIGHTY PUCKS (2)

FEB 19: A young woman has accepted a proposal from her boyfriend - a day after she survived being mauled by a tiger. Somer Stevens, 18, is lucky to be alive after she slipped at Tiger Haven, in Tenessee, and a tiger called Eeyore grabbed her arm through the wire of its enclosure. Her boyfriend came to the rescue, using a bamboo stick to prize open the tiger's jaws, and has now asked Somer to marry him.

PETE: MAUL YOU NEED IS LOVE (5)
BBC: THE I’LL DO OF THE TIGER (8)

WEEK 8

FEB 22: A woman has been bitten on the bottom by a bear hiding in an outdoor toilet in Alaska. Stannon Stevens has vowed to 'look before she sits' from now on after suffering a minor puncture wound down below.

PETE: YOU'RE BUM-BEAR-LIEVABLE (2)
BBC: ANOTHER ONES THE BUTT (2)

FEB 23: An appeal has gone out for volunteers to read books to the inmates at a shelter for abused farm animals in Australia. Edgar's Mission, near Lancefield, in Victoria, has discovered that reading to the animals reduces their anxiety.

PETE: WAR AND GEESE (2)
BBC: DONKEY-OTE (10)

FEB 24: A teddy bear, called Rainbow, has been taken hostage in Ayrshire, with a ransom note demanding two sausage rolls "or else".

PETE: I WANT YOUR SNACK, I WANT YOUR SNACK, I WANT YOUR SNACK, FUR GOOD (4)
BBC: YOU KNOW I’LL GREGGS, STEAL OR BORROW (10)

FEB 25: A sheep nicknamed Baarack has been sheared of 35kg of wool after being found living in the wild in Australia.

PETE: PLEASE DE-FLEECE ME (6)
BBC: THE SHORN SHEEP REDEMPTION (14)

FEB 26: Police chiefs in Pakistan's biggest city, Karachi, have put an armed rollerblading unit on the streets to thwart crime.

PETE: ROLLO-COP (12)
BBC: THE S-WEEEEEEEE-NEY (14)

WEEK 9

MAR 1: A guard dog was put to the test during an armed robbery training exercise at a jewellery store in Thailand...but he slept all the way through it!

PETE: DIAMONDS SNORE FOR ROVER (6)
BBC: SNORE PATROL (0)

MAR 2: Work is about to begin on building the first hotel in space, complete with restaurants, cinemas, and room for 400 guests. It could even be operational by 2027.

PETE: CALLING OCCUPANTS OF PREMIER INN-TERPLANETARY CRAFT (8)
BBC: INN DEEP SPACE (2)

MAR 3: A passenger plane had to make an emergency landing after the pilot was attacked by an "angry and aggressive" cat. The plane was flying from Doha to Qatar but diverted to Khartoum.

PETE: ON A WING AND A PURRRRRR (5)
BBC: AND I CAN’T FLIGHT THIS FELINE ANYMORE (2)

MAR 4: The National Lottery has teamed up with a brewery in a bid to find the owner of a £1m winner ticket. The Backyard Brewery in Walsall has been commissioned to brew 100 bottles of a blonde beer called "Just The Ticket" to publicise the missing ticket that was bought at a shop in the town.

PETE:  BREW WANTS TO BE A MILLIONAIRE? (8)
BBC: BLOTTO (4)

MAR 5: A "terrible" karaoke enthusiast has been fined £2,748 and banned from singing after his loud late-night performances led to 150 complaints. Jason Harvey, of Romford, who specialised in Abba songs but had a wide repertoire, was prosecuted under the Environmental Protection Act.

PETE: GIMME GIMME GIMME A BAN AFTER MIDNIGHT (10)
BBC: MAMAMIA – HERE WE GO AGAIN (4)

The Northern Echo:

WEEK 10

MAR 8: Animal lover Tiffany Robins got a shock when her female pet rabbit, Vader, gave birth to a record equalling 24 babies in North Carolina - because she thought her male rabbit, Romeo, had had the snip.

PETE: RABBIT ON THE SIDE (0)
BBC: WATERSNIP DOWN (4)

MAR 9: A man called Terry Boot has taken over from Peter Foot as Financial Director of footwear retailer Shoe Zone.

PETE: THE SHOE MUST GO ON (6)
BBC: LOOKS LIKE THE BOOTS ON THE OTHER FOOT (4)

MAR 10: Baz, the randy ram, has been given 'the snip' because his over-energetic love-making on a farm near Brisbane has left him crippled with arthritis and he keeps falling over and injuring himself whenever he tries to mate.

PETE: I CAN'T HELP FALLING IN LOVE WITH EWE (6)
BBC: RAMALAMA DING-DONG (6)

MAR 11: A Florida musician called Prince Midnight has paid tribute to his dead Uncle Filip by having a guitar made out of his skeleton, and says he would have heartily approved.

PETE: SKULL'S OUT FOREVER (6)
BBC: WHILE MY GUITAR GENTLY CREAKS (8)

MAR 12: A burglar, who broke into a house in the German town of Schwelm, has been caught after his DNA was found on a half-eaten sausage.

PETE: BANGER TO RIGHTS (7)
BBC: SNACK & TRACE (9)

WEEK 11

MAR 15: Zac, one of the world's oldest donkeys, has died at his home in Victoria, Australia, at the aged of 36. Zac had become a celebrity and now locals in Pyarmid Hill are campaigning for a memorial to him.

PETE: MULE NEVER WALK ALONE (0)
BBC: DONKEY GONE (4)

MAR 16: Eagle-eyed TV viewers spotted a football referee having a wee in the centre circle before a cup match in Brazil. Denis da Silva Ribeiro Serafim had the sneaky leak without pulling his shorts down after being caught short before the match between Boavista and Goias.

PETE: WEE ARE THE CHAMPIONS (2)
BBC: REFERWEE (4)

MAR 17: Poor old Thor the lion has had to have 'the snip' at Royal Burgers' Zoo in Arnhem, The Netherlands, because he was so prolific with his love-making that he was in danger of over-populating the gene pool.

PETE: IT'S A THOR POINT (3)
BBC: IN THE JUNGLE, THE MIGHTY JUNGLE, THE LION’S SNIPPED TONIGHT (6)

MAR 18: An Indian restaurant in Glasgow is trialling takeaways using a drone. The Shish Mahal has teamed up with drone pilot John Crawford to deliver curries by air.

PETE: KORMA FLY WITH ME (4)
BBC: NAA NAA NAA! VINDERFLU! VINDERFLU! NAA NAA (8)

MAR 19: TV personality Nadia Essex has revealed that she caught her boyfriend cheating when she received a notification from his Fitbit wristband showing he'd suddenly burnt 500 calories in the middle of the night.

PETE: A FITBIT ON THE SIDE (5)
BBC: IT’S TRAINING MEN (8)

WEEK 12

MAR 22: A Russian couple broke into a deserted cinema in St Petersburg, stole popcorn and drinks, and spent the night making love before making their exit. Now the cinema wants to offer them free tickets because they tidied up after themselves so well.

PETE: DID YOU FEEL THE EARTH MOVIE? (1)
BBC: RA-RA GOT-SHUT-IN, LOVERS OF THE RUSSIAN SCREEN (2)

MAR 23: Oxclose Farm, between Willington and Brancepeth, has had an unusual delivery - one of its cows has given birth to triplets.

PETE: MOO'S COMPANY, THREE'S A CROWD (2)
BBC: MOO MOO MOO, HOW DO YOU LIKE IT, HOW DO YOU LIKE IT? (2)

MAR 24: A California wine company is advertising a job, offering a $10,000 monthly salary, with free accommodation, and 30 cases of wine to sample. The Murphy-Goode Winery wants to give the right candidate the chance to find out more about working in the industry.

PETE: WORKING VINE TIL FIVE, WHAT A WAY TO MAKE A LIVING (6)
BBC: GRAPE EXPECTATIONS (2)

MAR 25: A photograph of a woman driving through Alabama, with a swarm of bees inside the car, has gone viral.

PETE: BABY YOU CAN HIVE MY CAR (6)
BBC: HIVE-WAY TO HELL (4)

The Northern Echo:

MAR 26: Neighbours living near a lake in Northampton are being plagued by Cedric the swan, who keeps knocking on their doors and rattling their letter-boxes. He has now been nicknamed the ASBO swan because he's such a noisy nuisance.

PETE: YOU CAN WING MY BELL (8)
BBC: SOME SWAN’S KNOCKING AT THE DOOR, SOME SWAN’S RINGING THE BELL (4)

 

 

WEEK 13

MAR 29: Two young women in Orlando have been caught dressing up as old grannies to try to cheat their way into getting their Covid-19 jabs early.

PETE: THE OLDEST PRICK IN THE BOOK (0)
BBC: MRS DOUBTPFIZER (4)

MAR 30: A group of Trappist monks at an abbey in Burgundy are praying for buyers to come forward after lockdown left them with 2.8 tonnes of surplus cheese. The monks produce the cheese at Citeaux Abbey to sell in their shop, but the pandemic has decimated business, so they've launched an emergency sale...

PETE: HALLOWED BRIE THY NAME (0)
BBC: BLESSED BE THE CHEESEMAKERS (5)

MAR 31: A mafia fugitive has been caught in his Caribbean hideaway after he gave himself away by making YouTube videos to show off his cookery skills. Marc Feren Claude Biart hid his face but was tracked down by his distinctive tattoos.

PETE: MOBSTER THERMIDOR (0)
BBC: SCONE CORLEONE (6)

APRIL 1: Husband and wife Stewart and Jessica Friesen are to compete against each other as professional racing drivers at a racetrack in Tenessee. The couple will go head to head in a truck racing event.

PETE: WIFE IN THE FAST LANE (2)
BBC: PETROL WEDS (7)