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Street magician distraught after drunk threw his magic props into river

Photos of children's entertainer Alfred Hill, with PC Jayne Marshall. Photo:

A street magician and children's entertainer was left distraught when a drunk threw his magic horseshoes puzzle into the River Wear as he performed in Durham city centre.

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  • This video shows a man in a dark blazer, smartly dressed, stood next to Alfred Hill (bottom right hand corner) Can you help police find this man?

It happened shortly after 2.15pm on Saturday 1st October as 73-year-old Alfred Hill was on Framwelgate Bridge.

A crowd of revellers, who had been celebrating a birthday approached Mr Hill and he asked one if he could try to remove a steel ring from the chain between the horseshoes.

But instead of playing along, the man swore at Mr Hill and threw the metal puzzle into the river.

Children's entertainer and street magician Alfred Hill.

Alfred, a former postman was left in tears as he bought the item 20 years ago at a convention and it was of great sentimental value.

PC Jayne Marshall said the man was thought to be in his 30s, and smartly dressed in a blazer.

She has also arranged for divers from Northumbria Police’s marine unit to carry out a training exercise in the river to see if they can find the horseshoes puzzle.

She said: “It is a heavy item so I am hoping it has just sunk and gone straight down where it was thrown in."

Anyone with information about the man responsible can call police on 101.

Alfred has bought a replacement horseshoe puzzle so he can carry on entertaining.