Christmas rescue as runners save the day

Festive runners saved the day just in time for Christmas after coming to the rescue of a holiday-bound family left stranded by the flooded ford.

Heavy ongoing rain just days before Christmas left Castle Road impassible for vehicles.

And disaster struck on Christmas Eve when a Leamington family tried to make it down the flooded road on the way to Birmingham Airport.

After getting too deep, the car’s engine stopped running leaving three elderly passengers stranded with no way forwards or back.

Police officers soon arrived on scene to help the men safely to the roadside, but were unable to move the car.

And as the fire brigade was unable to come out and rescue the waterlogged car, things began looking desperate.

But much-needed help soon appeared - in the unusual form of 20 festively-dressed runners more than happy to lend a hand.

The eager Kenilworth Runners shot past as part of their annual Christmas Eve run around Abbey Fields.

And already up to their knees in water and mud, the merry troupe was only too keen to lend a hand and soon waded in to push them free .

Dressed up in Santa hats and brightly coloured clothing, the team proved quite a sight for spectators as members pushed the stranded car out of the water before continuing on their way to enjoy mince pies back at their club.

And Claire Goult, one of the runners on the day, described it as perfect timing as they all waded past just at the right time and were only too keen to lend a hand.

“The water was so cold, and deeper than it looks, but we were already covered in mud and soaked through,” she said.

“The policemen couldn’t push the car out on their own and so it was just great timing as we ran past and could help.

“The three men who were stranded were so happy that we could help, they all waved and thanked everyone as people pushed the car out.

“Afterwards we just carried on running for our mince pies. It was all a bit of a whirlwind rescue really.

“We didn’t think about it, just helped because they needed and I really hope they made the flight for Christmas.”

The trio of rescued travellers were seen waving and cheering as the car was pushed to safety.

Runners involved in the rescue included Pauline Bable, Laura Gould, Danielle Mohacsi, Sheila Kennedy and Sam Goulder. Nick Williams – with Sgt Dave Kettle from Kenilworth SNT – steering the car safely out of the flood water.

Police sent out repeated warnings in the run-up to Christmas that the ford was flooded and the road should be avoided.

Plans are currently in place to set up an automatic warning system in hope of stopping drivers heading down Castle Road when water levels rise.

Warwickshire County Council is looking to spend up to £80,000 installing warning and diversion signs which would be triggered by water overflow throughout the year.

The plans have received support from the town council and it is hoped the scheme can progress over the next few months following a consultation exercise to decide on the very best option.