Lost for words

Citizen journalists are being challenged to find the origins of 40 well-known words like  'prat',  'wally' and  'tosser'.

Editors of the Oxford English Dictionary (OED) also need to source  'hoodie',  'dogging',  'pole dance' and  'loo'. All successful findings, which must include evidence of the usage of the words, will feature in the new series of BBC 2's Balderdash and Piffle, hosted by Victoria Cohen .

OED's chief editor John Simpson said:  'In last year's show people found words tucked away in football fanzines, LPs and school newspapers. It is these sources we can't easily get our hands on when we're researching.'

The OED tries to find the earliest usage of all 600,000 words in the English language. Last year the public helped update the dictionary on the  'ploughman's lunch', the '99 ice cream' and the  'full monty'.