A Vulcan bomber has run off a runway at an airfield in Warwickshire, narrowly avoiding a local road.

Warwickshire Police said Stratford Road was closed near Wellesbourne Mountford Airfield after the incident on Friday.

The heritage aircraft, based at Wellesbourne, is not airworthy, but was due to taxi down the runway at a public event on Sunday.

That has been cancelled, the group behind it said “due to “ongoing recovery work”.

The XM655 Maintenance and Preservation Society, which looks after the aircraft, said while it was “largely undamaged” a lot of inspection work needed to be carried out.

Writing on Facebook, it said: “Due to a malfunction of a piece of equipment in the cockpit, the aircraft remained at full power for approximately two seconds longer than intended.”

Photos of the huge bomber halted at the edge of a field with its nose peering over a hedge were shared widely on social media.

Robin Hammond, who lives in the area, said he was in his garden, when he heard testing taking place, and went down there to watch.

“They’d moved it to the end of the runway and then it went along at rapid speed… and I thought it’s going to slow down in a minute, but it didn’t,” he said.

“It left the runway and carried on across some land and ended up with its nose hanging over a hedge.”

He said it was only saved from going through the hedge into the road thanks to the softness of the soil.

“The pilot must have done a superb job in steering it,” Mr Hammond said.

The XM655 Maintenance and Preservation Society said all those with tickets for Sunday’s event had been reimbursed.

Vulcan bombers were part of Britain’s Cold War “V-force”, which also included Valiants and Victors.

They were operated by the RAF from the mid-1950s until the mid-1980s.

The last airworthy Vulcan flew for the final time in 2015, but not before being seen by millions at air shows and during heritage flights across the UK.

The XM655 is one of the last few still able to taxi.