HM Revenue and Customs has revealed the top ten oddest excuses people have given for sending in a late tax return.

Number one was “my pet goldfish died”, while number two was “I had a run-in with a cow”.

Another on the top ten was an accountant, who said he was too busy submitting his clients’ tax returns to do his own.

All those on the list received a £100 penalty for filing late.

The deadline for returns is January 31.