A CYCLIST was beaten with crutches by an elderly man on her way home from a morning bike ride yesterday.

Amber Weston, 46, said the man suddenly swung his crutches at her as she passed him in Poole Road, Westbourne, causing her to fall off her bike in shock, then struck and prodded her while shouting and swearing.

He continued to shout when she had got to her feet, then he headbutted her before the two were separated by passers-by.

Mrs Weston, a hairdresser and secretary from Braidley Road, said the incident had left her scared to cycle through Westbourne, and with aches in her shoulders.

“I was just coming back from a morning ride to Sandbanks as it was a nice day.

“This came out of nowhere. I think he just wanted to pick a fight with someone,” she said.

“He was at the zebra crossing outside Boots and almost on the pavement on the other side, so I gave him a very wide berth.

“Then his crutches came up, he was too far away to hit me but the shock knocked me off my bike.”

She said the man struck her shoulders with the crutches, and prodded her and her bike while shouting about a recent hip operation. She added: “I wasn’t badly hurt, but really shocked.

“He was effing and blinding, shouting and shouting at me.

“When I got up I said a few words back and he headbutted me, but luckily I was wearing my helmet.”

Shoppers and staff from the nearby businesses eventually separated the pair, and the police were at the scene minutes later to take their details, although no arrests were made.

“My husband came to pick me up, and as we left we saw the man smirking at us over the road,” she said.

“I have lived in Bournemouth all my life and I love it, but it has changed a lot over the last five years. It has got a lot more violent and aggressive.

“This is the third unprovoked attack on our family in the last few years.

“I will be pressing charges because I don’t want this to happen to anyone else.”

A Dorset Police spokesman said: “An incident took place at around 12.15pm where a female cyclist was assaulted by an elderly man with two crutches.

“There were no injuries and officers took down the details of both parties at the scene.”

He said an investigation is under way.

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