Driver takes a turn for the worse in Alnwick

A driver took a turn for the worse when trying to get to a famous Northumberland book shop

The path to Barter Books in Alnwick
The path to Barter Books in Alnwick

The motorist was trying to reach Barter Books in Alnwick, and attempted to negotiate a narrow winding path meant for pedestrians.

The driver’s antics last night drew derision from a passerby who captured the episode on camera, as well as by bosses at the second hand store in Alnwick’s former railway station.

Steven Hetherington, 25, of St James Estate in Alnwick, was walking home from the bank at around 1pm on Wednesday when he spotted the black car some way up the path, which has a bollard at its end and is around 20 feet from the road.

The chef at nearby Alnwick Infirmary took a picture on his phone from the opposite side of the road as the motorist tried to progress further up the path, which has a sharp right hand bend, while pedestrians tried to walk along it.

The car reached the bend and reversed, before attempting to drive up the path again.

Steven then watched the car reverse back down the path a second time, before returning to the road and accessing the shop by its intended vehicular entrance yards away. Steven said: “I just could not believe it when I walked past. I have seen some driving mistakes in my time but not that.”

He later uploaded his picture onto social networking website Facebook, where it was shared by scores of users and attracted numerous comments from disbelieving users.

David Champion, a director at Barter Books, said staff had been unaware of the incident until they were told about Steven’s Facebook picture.

He told how a year ago another driver had done the same thing while trying to get to an antiques business which shares the old station building.

In that instance, the driver could not open the vehicle’s doors as there was so little room on either side.

Mr Champion said: “You use the word silly, I think misguided.

“I am sure the person realised it was not a good idea within seconds of getting on it.”

No damage was caused to the path’s walls in the incident.

It follows another episode in Alnwick last month in which a woman driver trying to take a shortcut attempted to negotiate a narrow path meant only for pedestrians beside the town’s Iceland store. The path there has a 90 degree bend at its far end as well as a bollard. In that incident, some damage was caused to a lamppost which the car hit.

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