German crop pattern enthusiast Jozef Cene ended up in a swirl himself when he mistook a canal for a road - and drove straight into it.

To make matters more embarrassing for the tourist it was revealed that he is a policeman back home in Berlin.

Mr Cene had spent Friday evening having a quiet drink and chatting with other crop circle researchers in the Barge Inn at Honey Street.

On leaving he surprised cutomers sitting outside the pub by driving his car up to the canal edge.

One of the observers said: "We thought he was mucking about to start with."

Mr Cene, who has since returned to Germany, was alone in his hired Fiat Punto.

He paused momentarily at the edge of the canal then revved the engine before the car leapt forward.

One onlooker said: "He looked to the left and looked to the right to check nothing was coming, indicated to turn right and then the car leapt into the canal."

Pipe welder Patrick Povey went to the shocked tourist's aid. He said: "I was sat on a bench having a drink and the next thing I knew this chap drove his car straight into the canal."

As the car began to submerge Mr Cene attempted to open his door and escape but the pressure of the water forced the door back onto his legs, trapping him.

Mr Povey, 25, who lives on a narrowboat moored nearby, said: "I could see him struggling so I went in to help him."

He walked out into the chest deep water and helped the driver open the door and free his trapped feet.

Mr Povey said: "I did not stop to think, I just went in to help the bloke."

Police were called and breathalysed Mr Cene, who was not over the limit.

PC Mark Fiander-Lewis said: "The driver stated that he mistook the muddy and dark canal to be an extension of a wet Tarmac track and continued to drive straight over the bank and into the middle of the canal.

"This was much to the shock and disbelief of himself and several witnesses."

British Waterways arranged for the removal of the sunken car. One observer added: "The funniest thing was that it was completely underwater but his windscreen wipers were still going."