By William Lailey and Dan Coles
A crime-fighting milkman has told how he brought a drink driver to justice after spotting him in the early hours on his round – and even road blocked him with his milk float while waiting for cops to arrive on the scene.
Tony Fowler, 61, describes himself as the fourth emergency service to his customers – his early morning rounds in Melton Mowbray, Leics, have led to him foiling dozens of burglaries, catching fly tippers – and most recently stopping a drunk driver.
But his milk round heroics don’t stop there – he’s saved the life of one customer after discovering him collapsed in the kitchen of his home, rescued another from a fire – and even caught out one of his customers having an affair – after discovering him in a steamed up car in a lay by in the early hours.
Even though he’s saved more than one life, nothing’s too much trouble for the prince of pints – regularly popping into his elderly customer’s homes to change a light bulb, cook them a meal – and even make sure they’re claiming all the benefits they’re entitled to.
Tony, 61, said: “Sometimes danger is everywhere, especially since I’m working nights, but nothing’s been enough to scare me off. My customers need me and I like to help.
“I’m really pleased I caught that drunk driver -I tried to stop it and take it into my own hands, it was my milk float that managed to block him off.
“He could have swerved into me, and because the police couldn’t get there for whatever reason, I took the responsibility on.
“There could have been kids and families walking around and he could have hit them if he was to carry on.
“I managed to force him onto the verge, he got out and ran off, but the police grabbed him.”
Not just an exemplary milkman, Tony has even been awarded an MBE for services to his community, raising a total of £300,000 for a mixture of charitable causes – an MBE that he collected dressed as a cow.
Tony added: “It’s not just crime I try and stop, I do a mixture of things to look after my clients, I only noticed the drunk driver because I was coming
away from one of my usual customers after cooking him dinner.
“In the past I walked into one of my clients’ houses and noticed the door was open, when I walked in, she was on the floor with a broken hip and could not reach the phone.
“I’ve arrived at houses that were on fire and carried one of my customers out of the building.
“And I’ve even uncovered an affair. I saw this car parked in a layby, with steamed up windows, and a couple inside. I recognised the chap, so I knocked on the window and shouted: ‘I thought you were married!’
“My job is just to deliver the milk, but I don’t stop at that, I don’t walk away from anything that I know is wrong.”
Tony said: “I have been very fortunate in my life; I came from a one parent family and my father left me very early so my mum had to work
very hard – she taught me to treat others the same way I want to be treated.
“My customers have been through difficult situations like loss, poor health or financial worries, and I just want to help.”
Tony has been a milkman for over 30 years and has no plans of stopping soon – offering more than just a milk delivery but a shoulder to cry on,
a handyman or even a councillor to the people who rely on him an assortment of duties.
Tony said: “The old-fashioned milkman does it because he cares about his community.”