Stolen bus ends up in front garden

A pensioner who was woken up by a banging noise in the night looked out to see a double-decker bus in the front garden. The vehicle had rolled back into the garden, smashing into a fence and demolishing a concrete post after being abandoned by a thief - presumed a joyrider - at the top of a rise in Sandringham Avenue, Yarmouth.

A pensioner who was woken up by a banging noise in the night looked out to see a double-decker bus in the front garden.

The vehicle had rolled back into the garden, smashing into a fence and demolishing a concrete post after being abandoned by a thief - presumed a joyrider - at the top of a rise in Sandringham Avenue, Yarmouth.

The bus, one of a consignment

of triple-axle double-deckers imported second-hand from Hong Kong last year, had been taken from outside First's depot in Caister Road at about 3.55am on Sunday. At the end of a five-minute journey the driver, who may have had difficulty with the tricky steering, hit a parked Ford Mondeo car in the avenue before apparently panicking and jumping off at its junction with Barnard Avenue.

Householder Mr Brown, who called the police, said: "I heard a bang but at first I thought it was a lorry going over the speed humps in the road.

"I got up to have a look because our dog, who sleeps in the bedroom with us, kept on

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barking.

"I could not believe what I saw. The bus had just missed my car and knocked the fence and post down."

The bus was one of two which had been locked and parked outside on the concrete overnight because the depot was full.

It was driven off at the time of a shift change when there were few employees about, and none saw its disappearance.

Managers were yesterday examining closed-circuit TV footage to see if it could provide any clues to the culprit for

police.

One theory is that the thief could have been a former bus driver as it takes specialist knowledge to start a bus.

A company spokesman said last night: "We have got the bus back, but the damage will run into thousands of pounds, with body panels and windows needing to be replaced."

He said having the double-decker off the road would have no impact on services as there were sufficient spare vehicles.

Anyone with information is asked to call Norfolk CID on 0845 456 4567.

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