An elderly woman who ploughed her car through a packed marquee during a village flower show had taped instructions on how to drive to her dashboard.
Dozens of fete-goers were forced to jump for their lives when the blue Toyota RAV4 automatic car careered through the main marquee and collided with a stage.
Miraculously no one was seriously injured during the incident at the Burnham Market flower show in Norfolk at the weekend.
However organisers were stunned to find the handwritten note taped to the vehicles dashboard after making sure the unnamed, elderly driver was okay.
“Key in ignition. Foot on brake. Start engine. Gear Lever into D. Foot off brake,” the note read.
Dr Diana Black, 53, Secretary of the Burnham’s Flower Show and Carnival, Norfolk, witnessed the scene.
“It was like a terrorist incident. It was absolutely terrible,” Dr Black said.
“It was an accident, but when I saw that note I was in disbelief and started to feel angry – if you need written instructions, surely you shouldn’t be driving,” she said.
“We were astonished and hugely relieved that there were no fatalities or serious injuries but it was very distressing that all time and effort of the contestants who had entered the competitions in the marquee was virtually ruined,” she said.
“There could’ve been fatalities or serious injuries but miraculously there wasn’t,” she said.
“We were also sorry that the locals and visitors were deprived of the main part of what is normally a wonderful and important community event,” Dr Black said.
Dr Black said the elderly female driver got out of the car shaken up and apologetic.
Eyewitness Annette Lowe, 50, who had been in the tent, said “We heard an almighty bang, I turned around and saw this car going through the stage, I just looked on in utter bewilderment.”
“Although the car was going fast, everything else felt like it was moving in slow motion,” Ms Lowe said.
The incident happened around 11.30am on Saturday at the event in Burnham Market, Norfolk.
Around 12 people were in the tent at the time of the incident and around 30 people were setting up the show.
Treasurer Laurence Rubin is reported to have been knocked over by the car and was treated with minor injuries.
Dr Black said a few people sustained minor injuries for which she had assisted the paramedics who were called to the scene immediately.
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Norfolk Police are investigating what happened and considering what action to take, if any.
The force’s Inspector Lou Provart said on Twitter, “A traffic offence report has been completed and will be submitted for consideration of any offences based on the facts gathered at scene, including the note.”