Killer Derrick Bird sought revenge on taxi-rank bullies

Derrick Bird, the Cumbria killer, vowed revenge on his fellow taxi drivers after being subjected to practical jokes, name-calling and attacks on his car, the inquest into his death and those of his 12 victims heard yesterday.

Another cab driver, John McDonald, said that Bird spoke to him two days before carrying out a killing spree across the county last June. Mr McDonald told the hearing: "He said there were a few of the lads on the rank winding him up and he said, 'They are going to get it big style. You just watch, they are going to get it big style'."

Bird claimed one of his victims, Darren Rewcastle, 43, had thrown coffee over him at the rank the previous day. He held another driver, Terence Kennedy, partly responsible for tricking him into eating soap blocks during a diving holiday in Thailand.

Mr Kennedy lost part of his arm after being shot by Bird, 52, who was nicknamed "Stinky" and "Tattie- head" [potato-head] because of his dishevelled appearance. The inquest heard that Bird faced a tax bill of up to £25,000 but was "financially secure" with savings of more than £50,000.

It is believed his fear of going to jail over the unpaid tax and anger at his twin brother, his first victim, set off the rampage.

The inquest continues.