• 1Be in the leading position on.

    ‘the St George's Day procession was headed by the mayor’
    • ‘Sean Lamont heads a quintet of wing specialists who are vying for position in the Stade de France showdown.’
    • ‘A few years ago, his name headed a public opinion poll that had asked who the people of Benin would prefer as president.’
    • ‘The St Mary's U - 13 boys' team are currently heading the league positions just ahead of Leeds Grammar School.’
    • ‘Bridlington now head the league, albeit on points difference only.’
    • ‘During my rough times my luxuries were small: coffee headed the list.’
    • ‘The procession, headed by a military-style cadet band, will set off from Malsis Road at 2pm.’
    • ‘In London a procession headed by two soldiers who had resigned from the army put a black cardboard coffin outside the embassy.’
    • ‘With 32 titles, Kerry heads the list of All-Ireland football winners with rural clubs providing the majority of the county team.’
    • ‘Senior Army officers and civic leaders, headed by the Mayor of Scarborough Sheila Kettlewell, will also attend.’
    • ‘Once all runners had got up to speed and found track position, Viso immediately headed the times with a 47: 445.’
    • ‘Mayor Derek Benfield headed a list of local VIPs who assembled at Waterstone's in the Brunel Centre for yesterday's ceremony.’
    • ‘Crowds lined the streets on Friday to cheer a procession headed by England's patron saint on horseback.’
    • ‘With white and purple-robed priests heading the procession, the coffin was carried into the church.’
    • ‘The Queen and Prince Philip headed the royal procession into the hall, followed by the Prince of Wales with Princes William and Harry.’
    • ‘Five police cars headed the march.’
    • ‘Madrid heads the Spanish league with 11 rounds of matches remaining.’
    • ‘The Swansea ATC Band headed the carnival procession, and the enormous enthusiasm of carnival entrants made up for the lack of numbers.’
    • ‘Also qualifying was a veritable list of rowing powers: Italy, Poland, and France head the field.’
    • ‘Lampkin, of Silsden, now heads the title battle on equal points with Fujinami while Jarvis has climbed to joint third place.’
    • ‘At the festival celebrated in the country around Athens, a jar of wine and a vine headed the procession.’
    be at the front of, lead, be the leader of, be at the head of
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    1. 1.1Be in charge of.
      ‘an organizational unit headed by a line manager’
      ‘she headed up the Jubilee Year programme’
      • ‘The company is headed by managing director Martin Baker and employs a workforce of 60 in Grafton Way, Basingstoke.’
      • ‘Each Blackfoot reservation is governed by a general council headed by a single chairman.’
      • ‘A branch manager heads each distribution center and reports to one of five regional managers.’
      • ‘A committee which is headed by the chairman himself was also never formed.’
      • ‘Niedermayer, who was also the German consul in Belfast, headed the Grundig plant.’
      • ‘The man who heads the company charged with regenerating Swindon's town centre is leaving after only two years in the job.’
      • ‘He left the Met as director of intelligence but had previously worked for Special Branch and he headed the drugs directorate.’
      • ‘Politicians from the Upper South headed the Whig party and charted a moderate course.’
      • ‘Mark Gillingham heads the technology unit at the Great Books Foundation in Chicago.’
      • ‘Detective Inspector Steve Eckersley, who runs the robbery unit for south Manchester, headed a small team investigating the incidents.’
      • ‘The president, who heads the executive branch, serves for a single six-year term.’
      • ‘Would you let me know what percentage of the companies on this year's list are headed by women?’
      • ‘Guest speaker will be Richard Hallett who headed a successful campaign to keep a maternity unit in East Sussex open.’
      • ‘In the late 1990s he was, briefly, charged with heading a newly established repatriation service.’
      • ‘A new management structure headed by a political director.’
      • ‘Noel Terry became chairman and managing director and headed the company until his retirement in 1970.’
      • ‘R. Pichumani who heads the centre, said the plan was to cover students in all districts of the State in three years.’
      • ‘She has lived in Iraq for 30 years and heads CARE's operations in the country.’
      • ‘A monitoring unit, headed by Martinez's son, Hugo, pinpointed the area where the call was coming from.’
      • ‘Extensive powers were vested into the hands of the President who headed the executive branch of government.’
      • ‘Smith, who heads the Dutch branch of the organisation, was taken for questioning by security forces.’
      be in charge of, be at the head of, be in command of, command, be in control of, control, lead, be the leader of, run, manage, direct, administer, supervise, superintend, oversee, preside over, rule, govern, captain, be the boss of, be at the helm of
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  • 2Give a title or caption to.

    ‘an article headed ‘The Protection of Human Life’’
    • ‘One review, in a leading German paper, was headed: ‘Not to be touched with a barge pole.’’
    • ‘And Paddy Smith's print edition article in today's Oz is headed Smorgon takes road to more attractive product.’
    • ‘There is an article here that is headed, ‘President backs extreme view on sex’.’
    • ‘In a column headed Minor Matters, The Times of India writes about motivation classes for young children.’
    • ‘We have just read with interest your article headed Mum Furious at Police Inaction.’
    • ‘May I refer to the letter by M Jones of October 23 headed Peters for Mayor.’
    • ‘Essentially, we want to use the front page to present the key stories of the moment - the Web equivalent of the headlines heading radio and TV bulletins.’
    • ‘She has an obvious reverence for the music; most of the book's chapters are headed by famous song titles.’
    • ‘The pre-dive briefing took around an hour and the warning that heads this article was read at both beginning and end.’
    • ‘I refer to the article on page 3 of Journal headed The state of hospitals.’
    • ‘A column headed ITV Watch, possibly with a comma and an exclamation mark, would be far more useful, because hardly anyone does.’
    • ‘His article is headed The BBC has done the country a favour.’
    • ‘He heads his article by saying that havens for wild life don't need buffer zones.’
  • 3[no object, with adverbial of direction] Move in a specified direction.

    ‘he was heading for the exit’
    ‘we were headed in the wrong direction’
    • ‘A vehicle was heard leaving the lower village at speed, heading up towards the Church, out of Dunmore East.’
    • ‘So her last stop in the morning before heading to her car is usually the flower garden.’
    • ‘Now she heads back to her old home, to Richmond, Virginia, but things aren't quite like she expected to find them when she goes back home.’
    • ‘After the incident, the group was believed to have headed off in the direction of Sainsbury's petrol station.’
    • ‘She heads to the elevator to leave the hospital at last.’
    • ‘If Southern California boaters want inland, protected waters they have to head east.’
    • ‘Most birds are heading from wintering grounds to breeding areas in February and March.’
    • ‘He heads upstairs to the weight room for strength training.’
    • ‘Both women left the faculty lounge and headed off in opposite directions.’
    • ‘He and the other two changed direction and headed off into the night.’
    • ‘So instead of going to the house he heads to the office.’
    • ‘She heads straight for the back door and Josh follows her out.’
    • ‘I yell goodbye to my dad as he heads out the door for work.’
    • ‘Paying for the postcard, she tucked it in her handbag and headed for her departure gate.’
    • ‘Handing some money over, and nodding politely, she headed for the exit.’
    • ‘So he gathers up all his belongings and he heads back.’
    • ‘As he reached a window, he saw her, heading across the big lawn.’
    • ‘She also waters each plant thoroughly every Sunday afternoon before she heads home.’
    • ‘Scottish lawyers are concerned at skiers' naivety as they head off for their winter sun.’
    • ‘I climbed down and headed down the path toward the lake for a swim.’
    move towards, go towards, make for, aim for, make one's way towards, go in the direction of, direct one's steps towards, be bound for, steer for, make a beeline for
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    1. 3.1Appear to be moving inevitably towards (something, especially something undesirable)
      ‘the economy is heading for recession’
      • ‘Plans are being drawn up to pipe water around Scotland as the country heads for its driest spring on record.’
      • ‘With 47 required off the last six overs, the match appeared to be heading for a draw.’
      • ‘The game appeared to be heading for a goalless draw until Coniston struck twice within a minute.’
      • ‘Now some of the investors plan to sell on as the scheme heads for completion.’
      • ‘Unluckily, this meant the majority of my book was heading for the scrap heap.’
      • ‘However, the British schemes for air marshals appear to be heading for difficulties.’
      • ‘If all the paths pointed down, it could be assumed that the market was heading for a crash.’
      • ‘Scott is heading for a CD prize after clocking up perfect days for all of this half-term.’
      • ‘Three months ago it was feared Swindon was heading for a foster care crisis.’
      • ‘Mr Howard offered no explanation of why polls appeared to show him heading for defeat.’
      • ‘The ski industry is not doomed, says Harrison, but it is certainly heading for some hard times.’
      • ‘Langer and Montgomerie had appeared to be heading for their second triumph of the day.’
    2. 3.2[with object and adverbial of direction]Direct or steer in a specified direction.
      ‘she headed the car towards them’
      • ‘Head them towards the Washington area.’
      • ‘He sighed, and headed us back to the station.’
      • ‘We're going to head her back to port.’
      • ‘The sheep halted, and at the whistle the dog proceeded with short flanking runs which headed them into the gap.’
      • ‘Stallone heads his car towards him, so he jumps into the river.’
  • 4Soccer
    Shoot or pass (the ball) with the head.

    ‘a corner kick that Moody headed into the net’
    • ‘Windass was coming more and more into it and after a couple of sighters at Dibble's goal he headed home a cross by Crooks - only for the flag to immediately dampen his joy.’
    • ‘Duff attacks down the left wing, but his ball is headed away by Sulimani.’
    • ‘Finnan loops a cross into the box, and Keane heads the ball down into Duff's path.’
    • ‘Who needs Owen when a Beckham free kick is headed in by Frank Lampard.’
    • ‘The Czechs attack again, with Karel Poborsky heading a long ball back across the face of goal from the far post.’
    kick, hit, throw, lob, loft
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  • 5Lop off the upper part or branches of (a plant or tree)

    ‘the willow is headed every three or four years’
    • ‘The trunks of some trees have been headed which causes several branches to grow from just below the cut.’
  • 6[no object] (of a lettuce or cabbage) form a head.

    • ‘Of the handful of komatsunas available, some are crosses of komatsuna with heading brassicas, either napa types or bok choy.’
    • ‘Under very cool conditions, as in an unheated solar greenhouse or a polyethylene tunnel, any Asian heading cabbage will grow more loose and open.’