The third series of Britain’s Got Talent has kicked off with some of the best – and worst – auditions from around the UK.

Judges Simon Cowell, Amanda Holden and Piers Morgan saw hopefuls in London, Glasgow and Birmingham in the first show – all of them hoping to win the chance to appear in front of the Queen at this year’s Royal Variety Performance.

And this time around there was a lot to impress the panel.

First act on to the stage in London was 59-year-old strongman Manjit Singh, who amazed judges and audiences with his ability to blow up and burst a hot water bottle and pull a truck using only his ear.

“You are an absolute lunatic but I found your act incredibly entertaining,” Piers told him, before all the judges voted him through to the next round.

Meanwhile at the Scottish auditions they were all surprised by Susan Boyle, who said she had ambitions to sing on stage like Elaine Paige.

The 47-year-old, from West Lothian, won a standing ovation from the audience and judges with her rendition of I Dreamed A Dream from the musical Les Miserables.

“Without a doubt that was the biggest surprise I have had in three years,” Piers told her.

“When you stood there with that cheeky grin and said, ‘I want to be like Elaine Paige‘, everyone was laughing at you. No one is laughing now, that was stunning. I am reeling from shock”.

Others who won praise and a place in the next round included housewife Fabia Cerra, a former junior disco dancing champion who wowed Simon and Piers with her risque dancing.

Another dance troupe, Flawless, won themselves a standing ovation. “One of the best things I’ve ever seen in my life,” Simon told them.

Singing family troupe Good Evans also made it through as did father son comedy dance duo Stavros Flatley, who combined Greek dancing with Riverdance inspired moves.

But it wasn’t such good news for would-be impressionist Edmund Haw, Rosie Higgins aka clown Betty Delight, or dance troupe Happy Feet who performed in penguin costumes. “We didn’t come to Scotland to find 30 dancing penguins,” Simon told them.

Scottish student James Boyd was also given short shrift with his attempt to break the record for the most number of Ferrero Rocher chocolates eaten in one minute. An exasperated Simon buzzed him offstage despite continuing to time his record attempt – although it ended in failure after he managed only four chocolates.

“I honestly think I could do better than that,” Amanda Holden said.