April Fools! Round-up of the UK’s best pranks
Top of the pile this year is the Guardian, which hopped off its high horse for a day to bring the nation an outrageous stunt from Jeremy Clarkson, recently fired from the BBC for punching a producer.
Under the headline “Jeremy Clarkson joins Guardian drive for fossil fuel divestment”, the paper boasted that after a “dark night of the soul,” the former ‘Top Gear’ host was going to “regain the trust of the British public” by using his time to promote divestment.
The pugnacious petrol-head even made a video to back the paper’s caper.
Domino’s Pizza also rode in for a slice of tomfoolery. The firm unveiled a new fleet of “driverless delivery” vehicles.
Naming the two-wheeled automated scooters “Domi-no-drivers,” Domino’s claimed the vehicles are capable of carrying up to four times as much pizza as a traditionally-operated bike.
— Domino's Pizza UK (@Dominos_UK) April 1, 2015
Local and regional papers also offered up their share of satirical articles, including the Bognor Regis Observer, which penned a piece dispelling rumors that hippopotamuses were going to be introduced into the South Downs National Park.
The paper claimed the extensive rehabilitation of the parkland had fueled rumors that the large herbivores might be making an appearance, but added the rare grassland would not be used as grazing pastures.
If only it were true…
The Yorkshire Post meanwhile boasted a “quirky take” on the usual park-and-ride system, offering commuters the chance to ‘park and zorb’ to work instead.
— YorkshireEveningPost (@LeedsNews) April 1, 2015
“The city has been chosen to trial a ‘Park and Zorb’ station in a bid to cut air pollution and give office-goers a fun and healthy alternative journey to work,” the article read.
“For just £2.50 a day, or £9.99 for a five-day pass, city workers will be able to leave their cars in the Park-and-Zorb station at Elland Road – and roll the rest of the way to work.”
Someone’s on the ball (or in it).
Windermere Now also posted a zany transport suggestion. The paper announced that a sea-plane service would soon begin transporting tourists from the center of London to the picturesque shores of Lake Windermere in under two hours.
It said the new service would allow tourists to “view the Tower of London in the morning, enjoy an in-flight lunch, and land on Windermere after a trouble-free flight.”
Flight of fancy, more like.
Credit must be given to the University of Oxford, however, which announced its new “self-driving punt.”
It said the boats would “be able to navigate the waterways of Oxford automatically, using sensors to detect banks, other boats on the river, and even natural hazards such as swans.”
If true, that may have saved the lives of a few swans.