QUIRKY WORLD ... Shedding light on some hidden habits

Guilt-racked Britons are using their sheds to eat unhealthy snacks and store love letters from old flames, a new survey has shown.

QUIRKY WORLD ... Shedding light on some hidden habits

One in five shed owners admits to spending time in out-buildings to avoid their partners while 8% would rather hide away in their shed than be intimate with their partner.

Britons love their sheds so much that the average person spends almost a year of their life in them.

Research by Cuprinol to mark the start of the annual Shed of the Year competition reveals more than 14m people in the UK now owns a shed.

According to the study, 9% of shed owners in Britain use it to store secret unhealthy snacks, 8% hide cigarettes, 4% keep love letters from a former partner, and 11% admit using their sheds to make secret phone calls.

The research also shows that many now see their sheds as an extension of the home, with 35% featuring electricity, and 7% having a television.

Last year’s winner was Alex Holland from Machynlleth, Wales, for his boat-roofed shed — a unique and beautifully crafted shed made from a recycled boat for a roof and located at an altitude of 230m above sea level in the Cambrian Mountain range.


USA: Authorities say a Georgia teen is under arrest and accused of spending about $25,000 (€18,150) that a bank accidentally deposited into his account.

The Madison County Sheriff’s Department says 18-year-old Steven Fields of Hull in northeastern, Georgia turned himself in. He faces a charge of theft by taking.

The department says a teller at a bank in Hull inadvertently deposited a cheque for approximately $31,000 into the wrong account. Authorities say the money was spent on purchases at a car dealership, various stores and a fast-food restaurant.

Authorities say there was an effort to come to an agreement between Fields and the bank and that Fields said he couldn’t repay the money.


SCOTLAND: Zoo keepers have begun a daily monitoring of their giant pandas as mating season approaches.

Edinburgh Zoo hopes Tian Tian and Yang Guang will produce a cub this year as the creatures start to show the tell-tale signs they are ready to breed.

There was disappointment last year when the pair did not mate. Tian Tian was artificially inseminated, but lost her foetus at late term. Panda reproduction is a tricky process, with ovulation occurring once a year.


USA: Dozens of the best surviving specimens of mummified cats and dogs from ancient Egypt have taken up residence at a California museum in an exhibition called Soulful Creatures: Animal Mummies in Ancient Egypt.

Dogs and cats are often beloved family members in current culture, but animals held such a prominent place in ancient Egyptian society that tens of millions were mummified, some going into the pharaohs’ tombs to rest eternally in the company of their kings.

The examples at Orange County’s Bowers Museum include a dog so well detailed that even its floppy ears are prominent.


FRANCE: It is not every day that you can stand in line at the Louvre Museum next to a flock of sheep.

But that is what happened to tourists caught up in a protest by farmers beneath the glass pyramid of the museum.

Louvre officials said there were no arrests or damage in the protest, and it did not disrupt operations at one of the world’s most visited tourist sites


USA: The US government has been collecting dirt — lots of it.

Clumps came from the Texas panhandle, a shady grove in West Virginia, a corn field in Kansas and thousands of other places in the lower 48 states. Researchers scattered across the country for three years to scoop samples into plastic bags from 5,000 places.

Scientists said dirt has a lot to tell, adding that information gleaned from the samples could help farmers grow better vegetables, build a better understanding of climate change, and even solve crimes.

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