Police in Jaywick, Essex, were amazed to find a driver pootling along a road in a tiny toy car, which has a top speed of 4mph. And when stopped, they found that the man at the wheel was twice the drink-drive limit, so were obliged to charge him.

According to the East Anglian Daily Times, Paul Hutton, who stripped and rebuilt the battered Barbie car with an electric engine, admitted in court that he was drunk while driving the toy. He has been given a mandatory three-year driving ban as this was his second drink-driving offence in 10 years.

“The police car came up alongside me and the officer said, "Are you all right there, mate?" A lot of burble came out", he stated. "I knew it was daft, but I didn’t realise it was a criminal thing to do.”

The police are yet to return the car.