An elderly couple who forgot where they parked their car have been reunited with the vehicle FIVE days later.
Emmanuel Elliott, 81, and partner, Hilda Farmer, 79, had parked their Ford Fiesta somewhere near Cheltenham General Hospital in Gloucestershire on Friday afternoon for Emmanuel to attend an appointment.
Hilda said she dropped her partner at the entrance and then found a parking spot “within a mile and a half” of the building, on a street she thought had “nice houses on one side”.
When the couple returned from their appointment, however, their car was nowhere to be found.
Hilda Farmer and Emmanuel Elliott were all smiles as they were reunited with their missing car
Family and friends spent days trawling the nearby streets without success in an attempt to help the Gloucester couple find the vehicle – they even offered a reward on Tuesday of £100 to anyone who could locate it.
The Fiesta was discovered a day later in the St George’s Road car park about 900 metres from the hospital and had been ticketed three times by wardens.
Hilda said she must have dreamt she parked it beside houses.
She said her granddaughter played a major role in locating the car after launching a public appeal on social media for locals to keep an eye out for the silver Fiesta.
Hilda, who parked the car, said she thought she had left it on a street with houses
Emmanuel joked with reporters he “hoped he remembered how to drive” after the eventful five days
The post went viral and attracted the attention of local news outlets, with several people soon contacting media to say they had seen the car.
The relieved couple’s reunion with their vehicle was filmed by TV crews who had published stories in the days prior about the parking mystery.
Hilda told Gloucestershire Live : “It feels crazy. Aren’t we lucky to live in a country where an old aged pensioner’s car gets national news coverage? Thank God we live in England.
“My granddaughter has got hundreds of people on her Facebook. She put the appeal on there and someone has seen the car.
“We’re really happy because it’s the only car we have got. We had to go on our bikes yesterday.
“I prefer riding my bike to driving a car, but there are some things you can’t do without a car.”
Emmanuel told the BBC it was marvellous to have found it.
He said: “It’s been quite a five days. I hope I can remember how to drive.”
The car was found five days after it was parked with three tickets from the local council (Image: Gloucestershire Live WS)
The car park the vehicle was found in was 900 metres away from the hospital (Image: Gloucestershire Live WS)
Mike Redman, Cheltenham Borough Council’s director for built environment said: “We are pleased to hear that the couple have been reunited with their car after what must have been a worrying time.
“Because of the length of time the car was in the carpark, it has received a number of PCNs (parking charge notices) as any vehicle without a valid ticket would.
“There is a formal appeal process which the couple will need to follow in order to challenge the tickets, which is explained in full on the reverse of the PCNs.
“We will of course look on this as sympathetically as we can in the circumstances that have been highlighted.’’