Quirky World ... Tractor seized after jaunt on busy motorway

ENGLAND: A tractor has been seized by police after drivers spotted it being driven along one of the country’s busiest motorways-

The Central Motorway Police Group said the bright red tractor was spotted travelling at “low speed” on the southbound carriageway of the M6 near Birmingham in the West Midlands at about 5.25am. Tractors are banned from using the motorway.

Police said they “received a few calls” about the tractor as it was driven between spaghetti junction in Birmingham and junction 5, with concerned motorists “shocked and worried that the slow nature of the tractor could create a hazard”.

Inspector Mark Watkins said the male driver was unaware he was breaking the law and was found to be uninsured.

CHINA: An official in eastern China has been sacked after a picture of him being given a piggyback across a flooded path during a search for missing children went viral online, sparking outrage.

The photo showed the official from Guixi in Jiangxi province being carried on another man’s back through ankle-deep water, keeping his leather shoes dry, the official Xinhua news agency reported.

He was caught on camera on Saturday during a search for three children ENGLAND: An airline upgrade from cargo to first class for a cat and the best way of warding off vampires are among the more bizarre requests made by travellers.

One customer complained that the beach was not smooth enough, while another asked if he could take a plate of a mother-made roast dinner as hand luggage on a flight.

Other strange incidents revealed by online travel company Opodo included a Brazil-bound holidaymaker who wanted to know if he needed a passport for his python which he wanted to take with him so he could reunite it with its family in the Amazon and a caller claiming to be the Queen and asking for a free first-class trip to Australia, threatening staff with jail for treason if the request was refused.

ENGLAND: Neighbours of a farm site had to live with the loud crowing and calling from three cockerels and numerous ducks for a 20-month period despite the landowner being served with two noise abatement orders, a court has heard.

Helen Rogers, 57, is accused of three offences of failing to comply with a noise abatement order served on St Peter’s Farm in Church Lane, Hambledon, Hampshire, by Winchester City Council.

David Ingram, head of environmental health at the council, said noise monitoring was carried out at the site following complaints received from neighbours to the farm.

USA: Farmers may soon have a new weapon in their battle against crop-destroying wild boars — bacon.

Sodium nitrite, which is a preservative used to cure bacon, is being tested by scientists at the Department of Agriculture to see whether it could be used as a poison to deter the hogs, which cost the US about $1.5bn (€1.10bn) a year, including $800m in farm damage.

USA: New York Mayor Bill de Blasio portrayed himself as a man of the people in last year’s election, and at the weekend he became a pirate among mermaids.

He arrived for the Coney Island Mermaid Parade wearing a puffy pirate shirt and brandishing a fake sword — becoming the first mayor to dress up in costume for the event.

His wife, Chirlane McCray, and their daughter, Chiara, wore blue and gold mermaid dresses, while son Dante was bare-chested and painted blue. Dante and Chiara were chosen King Neptune and Queen Mermaid of the parade.

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