• 1Be in the leading position on:

    ‘the St George's Day procession was headed by the mayor’
    • ‘A few years ago, his name headed a public opinion poll that had asked who the people of Benin would prefer as president.’
    • ‘Five police cars headed the march.’
    • ‘Bridlington now head the league, albeit on points difference only.’
    • ‘With white and purple-robed priests heading the procession, the coffin was carried into the church.’
    • ‘Madrid heads the Spanish league with 11 rounds of matches remaining.’
    • ‘In London a procession headed by two soldiers who had resigned from the army put a black cardboard coffin outside the embassy.’
    • ‘Once all runners had got up to speed and found track position, Viso immediately headed the times with a 47: 445.’
    • ‘Senior Army officers and civic leaders, headed by the Mayor of Scarborough Sheila Kettlewell, will also attend.’
    • ‘Mayor Derek Benfield headed a list of local VIPs who assembled at Waterstone's in the Brunel Centre for yesterday's ceremony.’
    • ‘During my rough times my luxuries were small: coffee headed the list.’
    • ‘Lampkin, of Silsden, now heads the title battle on equal points with Fujinami while Jarvis has climbed to joint third place.’
    • ‘Crowds lined the streets on Friday to cheer a procession headed by England's patron saint on horseback.’
    • ‘The procession, headed by a military-style cadet band, will set off from Malsis Road at 2pm.’
    • ‘The St Mary's U - 13 boys' team are currently heading the league positions just ahead of Leeds Grammar School.’
    • ‘At the festival celebrated in the country around Athens, a jar of wine and a vine headed the procession.’
    • ‘The Swansea ATC Band headed the carnival procession, and the enormous enthusiasm of carnival entrants made up for the lack of numbers.’
    • ‘With 32 titles, Kerry heads the list of All-Ireland football winners with rural clubs providing the majority of the county team.’
    • ‘The Queen and Prince Philip headed the royal procession into the hall, followed by the Prince of Wales with Princes William and Harry.’
    • ‘Sean Lamont heads a quintet of wing specialists who are vying for position in the Stade de France showdown.’
    • ‘Also qualifying was a veritable list of rowing powers: Italy, Poland, and France head the field.’
    be at the front of, lead, be the leader of, be at the head of
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    1. 1.1 Be in charge of:
      ‘an organizational unit headed by a line manager’
      ‘she headed up the Jubilee Year programme’
      • ‘Politicians from the Upper South headed the Whig party and charted a moderate course.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘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.’
      • ‘Extensive powers were vested into the hands of the President who headed the executive branch of government.’
      • ‘Mark Gillingham heads the technology unit at the Great Books Foundation in Chicago.’
      • ‘A new management structure headed by a political director.’
      • ‘The company is headed by managing director Martin Baker and employs a workforce of 60 in Grafton Way, Basingstoke.’
      • ‘Would you let me know what percentage of the companies on this year's list are headed by women?’
      • ‘A committee which is headed by the chairman himself was also never formed.’
      • ‘Detective Inspector Steve Eckersley, who runs the robbery unit for south Manchester, headed a small team investigating the incidents.’
      • ‘Niedermayer, who was also the German consul in Belfast, headed the Grundig plant.’
      • ‘She has lived in Iraq for 30 years and heads CARE's operations in the country.’
      • ‘R. Pichumani who heads the centre, said the plan was to cover students in all districts of the State in three years.’
      • ‘Noel Terry became chairman and managing director and headed the company until his retirement in 1970.’
      • ‘In the late 1990s he was, briefly, charged with heading a newly established repatriation service.’
      • ‘A monitoring unit, headed by Martinez's son, Hugo, pinpointed the area where the call was coming from.’
      • ‘Guest speaker will be Richard Hallett who headed a successful campaign to keep a maternity unit in East Sussex open.’
      • ‘The president, who heads the executive branch, serves for a single six-year term.’
      • ‘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’’
    • ‘The pre-dive briefing took around an hour and the warning that heads this article was read at both beginning and end.’
    • ‘And Paddy Smith's print edition article in today's Oz is headed Smorgon takes road to more attractive product.’
    • ‘He heads his article by saying that havens for wild life don't need buffer zones.’
    • ‘His article is headed The BBC has done the country a favour.’
    • ‘In a column headed Minor Matters, The Times of India writes about motivation classes for young children.’
    • ‘There is an article here that is headed, ‘President backs extreme view on sex’.’
    • ‘I refer to the article on page 3 of Journal headed The state of hospitals.’
    • ‘We have just read with interest your article headed Mum Furious at Police Inaction.’
    • ‘One review, in a leading German paper, was headed: ‘Not to be touched with a barge pole.’’
    • ‘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.’
    • ‘A column headed ITV Watch, possibly with a comma and an exclamation mark, would be far more useful, because hardly anyone does.’
    • ‘She has an obvious reverence for the music; most of the book's chapters are headed by famous song titles.’
    • ‘May I refer to the letter by M Jones of October 23 headed Peters for Mayor.’
  • 3also be headed[no object, with adverbial of direction] Move in a specified direction:

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