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Village shock to find cars buried beneath collapsed wall

By Western Gazette - Yeovil  |  Posted: October 11, 2012

BURIED CAR: Stoke-sub-Hamdon residents were left shocked when part of a wall suddenly collapsed on to two parked cars after heavy rain swept Somerset and Dorset

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Villagers were left shocked when a wall collapsed on two cars after heavy rain swept Somerset and Dorset.

Police alerted residents to the incident in the early hours of Saturday morning after a 12 ft stone wall fell on to two cars parked on Bonnie’s Lane, in Stoke-sub-Hamdon, near Yeovil.

The Met Office had issued two severe weather warnings for Somerset on Friday.

One of the damaged cars – a Ford Fiesta – belonged to Marilyn Biggs, 59, of High Street, who first heard of the accident when officers called at her door at 1.30am.

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She said: “My husband was called and the police came to notify us to look in the lane, and that’s the first we knew about it.

“I think it was brought about by all the wet weather. It was our neighbour’s wall that just collapsed.

“My husband had heard voices but he thought it was kids until the police knocked on our door.

“At least no one was hurt, that’s one blessing because the school is nearby. It was lucky it happened at night.”

The road remained closed between Castle’s Lane and High Street on Tuesday.

Mrs Biggs, who believes her car has been written off, said the closure could cause disruption in the village as many parents park on the road to drop their children to school.

The wall stood at the rear of a home on High Street where Ken Ashford has lived with his wife for more than 60 years.

The 87-year-old said the incident had left him shaken. He said: “I didn’t hear anything.

“I didn’t know anything until the police came banging on the door. Nothing like this has happened to us before.

“It has upset us. It’s put us out of gear. We have been worried about it.

“The surveyor was here on Monday and they said not to move anything.

“He put it down to the weather. He can’t see it could have been for any other reason.

“We are shocked. But there’s nothing I can do about it. We are in the hands of the insurance people now.”

Robin Strickland, 38, of High Street, said part of a wall on his property also collapsed during the same night – just 100 yards away from Mr Ashford’s property.

A spokeswoman for Somerset County Council said on Monday Bonnie’s Lane would remain closed until the rubble is cleared by contractors employed by the council.

A spokeswoman for Avon and Somerset Police said: “We received a call at 1.09am on Saturday to reports of a wall that had collapsed.

“It buried a Ford Fiesta and half-buried a BMW. The road was closed.

“The owners of the vehicles were contacted. Nobody was in either car. The matter is now with the insurance companies.”

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