[an error occurred while processing this directive]
BBC News
watch One-Minute World News
Last Updated: Saturday, 1 April 2006, 12:24 GMT 13:24 UK
Have you been April fooled?
By Justin Parkinson
BBC News website

David Cameron and Chris Martin
Could Mr Cameron sing on the next Coldplay record?
Has Tony Blair declared his true political colours by painting the door of 10 Downing Street red?

Has Coldplay's Chris Martin done the same by cosying up to Conservative leader David Cameron?

And, as for penguins by the Thames and roads made of biscuits: has the whole world gone mad?

Millions of newspaper readers and radio listeners will have woken up on Saturday only to be bemused or enraged by the journalist's biggest joy of the year: the April Fools' Day joke.

Notting Hill windmill

Fleet Street's finest have not disappointed with their outlandish tales and cringeworthy wordplay.

The Daily Mail shows pictures of a "socialist" red door being installed at 10 Downing Street, complete with comments from design consultant April Fewell.

Crumbs: Biscuits-for-roads plan is hard to digest

If red is the new black, blue is just as en vogue with one of the world's trendiest men.

The Guardian has Coldplay's lead singer, Chris Martin, agreeing to release a version of one of the band's hits in an effort to persuade young people to vote Conservative.

The song Talk has been renamed Talk to David, after Mr Martin's actress wife Gwyneth Paltrow met party leader David Cameron's other half Samantha at a yoga class.

Mr Martin, an environmental campaigner, reportedly turned to the Tories after seeing a wind turbine on the roof of Mr Cameron's Notting Hill home.

Sing for your shopping

He is quoted as saying: "I realised that whatever Labour said about Kyoto, you were never going to see a windmill on the roof of No 10."

Also on a musical theme The Times's Alexi Harpor (April Hoaxer?) describes the joy of "chip and sing" cards.

From 2009, customers will be encouraged to belt out tunes in supermarkets rather than type in a code they can easily forget.

"A trip to the Tate Modern then a fish supper?"

Apparently, the singing voice is more difficult to forge than anything else - except, maybe, a newspaper article.

The Daily Mirror shows an oak tree with "abnormal growths" in the shape of the Queen, the Duke of Edinburgh and the Prince of Wales.

But the exact location is being kept secret "because of fears it could attract druids".

On a sadder note, The Sun shows a lone jackass penguin strolling along the south bank of the Thames, having been accidentally taken from his Antarctic home by fishermen.

Straining the credulity of even the most gullible reader, it quotes "one joker" as saying the creature was "popping into Savile Row to p-p-pick up his penguin suit for a black tie do".

Ode to anger

But perhaps the most blood-boiling effort this year came from BBC Radio 4's Today programme.

After months of protests at the station losing its UK Theme - a medley of British tunes which woke up listeners for more than 30 years - it reported that a specially composed Euro Theme was to replace it.

It included a snippet of Beethoven's Ode to Joy, French accordion music and the theme tune from the Dutch-based 1970s detective drama Van Der Walk.

Today proudly announced the last was the "quintessence of Holland", as listeners up and down the UK almost choked on their cornflakes.

Listen to clips from Radio 4's spoof 'EU theme'

Why do we fall for scams?
31 Mar 06 |  Africa
Still a good joke - 47 years on
01 Apr 04 |  Southern Counties

Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit


Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific