Drinker hits new height of insobriety ? up a tree

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The Independent Online

It's happened to everyone after a night of overzealous imbibing. As the first rays of light cut through the curtains and the first moan of regret is uttered, the awkward question arises – how did you get home last night?

For Gary Carter, it was a little bit more difficult to explain. After a visit to his local, the Red Lion in Trimdon, County Durham – the Prime Minister's seat – he decided to embark on a nocturnal adventure climbing a tree. And that's where his enthusiasm ran out – 25 feet off the ground.

Bemused firefighters were forced to call in specialists who normally deal with cliff rescues. "When the first crew got there, a young gentleman was stuck up a tree, totally motionless," said Stuart Guthrie, the divisional officer who supervised the rescue. "He didn't wake up the whole time we were there, even when we used a line to lower him down to the ground, put him in a stretcher and took him to hospital."

Mr Carter, a 22-year-old print finisher, said: "I can't remember leaving the Red Lion, and I've got no idea how I got up that tree."

Alice Hodgson, licensee of the Red Lion, said: "He was out of his tree, up a tree."

The rescue capped a hard day for County Durham Fire Brigade, which was also called to deal with a street left without electricity after a van driver hit a pylon, a home-owner who was stuck on his roof and a vet who was down a ditch with a cow that had slipped while trying to calve. "It was a funny sort of a Saturday, most unusual," Mr Guthrie said.

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