Beds, Herts & Bucks

Leighton Buzzard washing machine corn snake rescued

Colin Millar with Jemima the corn snake Image copyright RSPCA
Image caption Jemima's owner Colin Millar was delighted to have his wayward corn snake back

A shocked man was left in a spin after discovering a snake slithering under his washing machine.

Jemima, a 3ft (1m) corn snake, was spotted in a flat in Leighton Buzzard.

The RSPCA carried out a tricky rescue involving moving the machine. After Jemima bolted into the wall, they had to remove the skirting boards.

The snake belonged to a neighbour and had been missing for three months. It is thought she kept warm living inside the insulated wall of the flat.

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Kate Wright, from the RSPCA, was called to the Bedfordshire flat at about 04:00 BST on Thursday.

Having rescued the "healthy-looking" adult snake she knocked on nearby doors until she found Jemima's relieved owner, Colin Millar.

Image copyright RSPCA
Image caption Kate Wright had to move the washing machine and dismantle skirting boards to get to the snake

"Jemima went missing at Easter and I'd pretty much given up on ever finding her. I looked everywhere I could think of," he said.

"It is remarkable that Jemima has managed to survive and be returned reasonably healthy. She must have been insulated in the walls of the building."

"We're so pleased she's home," Mr Millar added.

Corn snakes, which are not venomous, are native to parts of North America and can grow up to 6ft (1.8m).

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