2017 saw a host of emotional, inspiring and shocking stories in your Bromsgrove Advertiser, but the year also brought some funny and downright bizarre tales too.

From the mermaid who found a new place swim, to the runaway pig who sought refuge at a Bromsgrove care home, and how could we forget the elusive 'Bromsgrove Beast'?

Here are 10 of the most funny and bizarre stories from the last 12 months.


In April, bizarre footage captured the moment a man was mauled by a badger, as he attempted to pick up the angry animal at a barbecue in Alvechurch.

As he picked the animal up and held it in the air, the badger clamped its jaws on his fingers and refused to let go – despite him shaking his hand back and forth as he screamed in pain.

Charlotte Reynolds, 26, who was at the barbecue and captured the incident on her phone, said the victim went for a TB and tetanus jab but thankfully didn't need stitches.

Read the full story here.


Bromsgrove Advertiser:

Earlier this month, a trailer of 640 turkeys overturned near junction 5 of the M5, near Wychbold.

Many of the animals escaped on to the the motorway and several sadly died.

Thankfully, one turkey was rescued. The bird, now named Asha, meaning 'hope', is now living out his days at Hillfields Animal Sanctuary in Blackwell.

Animal rights group Peta called on Worcestershire County Council to grant approval for a memorial tombstone in tribute to the turkeys.

Read the full story here.


In October, aspiring mermaid Aries was looking for a new place to swim, after being banned from using her tail at Bromsgrove's Dolphin Centre.

Leia Trigger, aged 18, was rejected from several public pools in the area, but found a new home at Perdiswell Leisure Centre in Bilford Road.

Read the full story here.


A CARE home in Catshill had an unlikely visitor in May, when an escaped pig stopped by in search of food.

Staff at Bluebrooke Residential Home first spotted the swine trotting around the Stourbridge Road driveway, and invited him into the back garden.

After staff posted an appeal on Facebook page Spotted: Bromsgrove, the pig was eventually reunited with his owner.

Read the full story here.


Bromsgrove Advertiser:

In October, farmers looking for love were herded up for a quirky new match-making event in Belbroughton, dubbed ‘speed dating for countryside folk’.

The event, named The Farmer Wants A Wife, was based on a speed dating format, and offered an alternative to rural residents who found online dating daunting.

Read the full story here.


In June, Bromsgrove pensioner David Wherton claimed to have spotted a black panther while walking home from the shops.

David Wherton, 68, said he stumbled upon a 'muscular' cat-like creature walking down a dried up stream bed between Royal Worcester Crescent and Penshurst Road.

Dozens of other witnesses responded to our story with similar sightings of what has since been nicknamed the 'Bromsgrove Beast'.

Read the full story here.


Single people in Bromsgrove were voted the funniest in the UK, in a survey carried out by top dating site Elite Singles.

Bromsgrove beat Wilmslow in Cheshire to the top spot, and was joined in the top five list by Brentwood, Westcliff-on-Sea and Cheadle in Manchester.

It also topped the list for the UK's wittiest women, but didn't make the cut for the nation's funniest men.

Read the full story here.


Bromsgrove Advertiser:

In February, a financial adviser in Bromsgrove shared his top tips for making tricky decisions - wearing a chicken hat on his head, of course.

Self-employed John Clapham uses the prop, complete with an extensive array of bird puns, to ensure his customers are kept at ease when making tricky financial decisions.

Mr Clapham, who works under Stoke Prior firm AFH Wealth Management, said he also uses a flaming wallet prop to demonstrate how to protect customers' assets when the unexpected happens.

Read the full story here.


In April, Bromsgrove pensioner Derek Ireson claimed his hen had broken a town record, by laying an egg the size of a bottle cap.

Derek Ireson, 77, of Littleton Avenue, had a shock when he opened his garden chicken pen to find the 3cm-long egg lying next to a normal-sized one.

Read the full story here.


A CLOWN spotted near the children's playground off Recreation Road in March caused passersby to take refuge in the nearby Asda supermarket.

Crabtree Lane resident Gill Finlayson, who suffers from coulrophobia (a fear of clowns), snapped a photograph of the purple-suited figure on her mobile phone.

The clown, who, it later turned out, was innocently selling tickets for the Charles Chipperfield Circus, was the 'quiet topic of discussion' among Asda shoppers.

Read the full story here.