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House owner Guy Ruddy of Dymchurch holds sweepstake on when next car hits his fence

By Sean Axtell

Cars crash through one man’s garden fence so often that he is holding a public sweepstake on the date of the next accident.

Guy Ruddy, of Martello Tower 23 in Hythe Road, Dymchurch, is offering the winner supper inside his historic home.

It comes after a total of seven vehicles smashed through his wooden fence in as many years, with the latest accident occurring this month.

Guy Ruddy of Dymchurch has had several cars crash through his fence
Guy Ruddy of Dymchurch has had several cars crash through his fence

He said: “The first thing you do is run over there and check they are alright. The collisions haven’t been particularly nasty because it’s a 40mph road, people don’t tend to suffer injuries.

“When it first happened I thought ‘oh no’, but it’s happened so often now it almost makes me smile.

The 54-year-old project manager believes the crashes are down to lapses in drivers’ attentions on the bend, which comes after a long straight.

Despite the high number of crashes and the risk to Mr Ruddy’s safety, Kent Highways refuses to offer him any protection.

He said: “Obviously if someone or my dog was in that area of the garden at the time of any of these crashes there could have been serious injury.

“There have been seven crashes in seven years. Three of those have happened in the last 18 months.

Seven cars have crashed through Guy Ruddy's fence
Seven cars have crashed through Guy Ruddy's fence

“The council says it isn’t an accident hotspot. All we need is a safety barrier there.”

But Kent Highways refuses
to build barriers because they “are not used to protect private land or property”.

The authority said it will continue to monitor the situation.

In an email seen by the Express, a highways officer said: “Safety barriers are used where there is a local hazard within or immediately adjacent to the highway that may cause a danger to the occupants of an errant vehicle or give rise to a secondary event.

“Examples of these hazards are embankments or vertical drops, above ground structural supports, bridges, water hazards.

A crash outside Mr Ruddy's house
A crash outside Mr Ruddy's house

“Unfortunately safety barriers are not used to protect private land or property.”

The sweepstake can be entered by visiting the Real Marsh Watch Facebook page.

Mr Ruddy added: “You’ve got to have a little bit of fun with it because the situation is so bizarre.

“The winner can come over for tea and have a look around the tower if they fancy.”

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