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 Magician left distraught by birthday drunk





Last weekend Michael Lambert and his son Jonathan Lambert, along with their friend Robert Chappel from Esh Winning went down into Durham to look for Alf's horse shoes and found them in the water with the aid of a magnetic fishing rod.


They took the puzzle, which had sustained only superficial damage to the front desk at Durham police station and Alfred has now been reunited with his treasured possession and is absolutely over the moon.


PC Jayne Marshall said; "We are thrilled and delighted that Alfred's story touched so many hearts. It was a lovely idea to go and look for the horseshoe puzzle and to find it is the icing on the cake.


"There were also some very generous posts on social media from people including offers to make brand new, original horseshoes and offers of money towards a new set."


A man has come forward and identified himself as the person responsible for throwing the item into the river, and police will be speaking to him on a formal basis in the next couple of days.



​A street magician and children's entertainer was left distraught when a drunk threw his magic horseshoes puzzle into the River Wear as he performed in Durham city centre.


It happened shortly after 2.15pm on Saturday, October 1st as 73-year-old Alfred Hill was on Framwelgate Bridge.


A crowd of revellers, who had been celebrating a birthday approached Mr Hill and he asked one if he could try to remove a steel ring from the chain between the horseshoes.


But instead of playing along, the man swore at Mr Hill and threw the metal puzzle into the river.


Alfred, a former postman was left in tears as he bought the item 20 years ago at a convention and it was of great sentimental value.


PC Jayne Marshall said the man was thought to be in his 30s, and smartly dressed in a blazer.


She has also arranged for divers from Northumbria Police’s marine unit to carry out a training exercise in the river to see if they can find the horseshoes puzzle.


She said: “It is a heavy item so I am hoping it has just sunk and gone straight down where it was thrown in.

Alfred has bought a replacement horseshoe puzzle so he can carry on entertaining; he is pictured above with PC Marshall.