RESIDENTS in Alvechurch have been left stunned and shocked following the discovery of the body of a dead man in a bus shelter near the village on Wednesday morning.
Police closed off Redditch Road at about 8.10am when the man, believed to be in his 60s, was found in the the shelter as the rain bucketed down.
An ambulance crew and the fire service were in attendance and quickly covered the bus stop with a tarpaulin to hide the scene.
Distraught residents said they had seen the man standing at the shelter throughout the previous evening although earlier reports that he had pleaded for a place to stay the night in the village have been dismissed.
At about 7.15pm that night it is understood he knocked on the door of one of the houses where he was given some hot water and food.
A concerned resident said he was offered shelter but insisted he would be fine staying the night at the bus stop, which, without a light, has become a well-known resting place for people, so his presence would not have raised any concerns.
“We are all very upset that this has happened in our village,” she said. “I know the person who looked after him and it was what the man wanted. He was given hot water and food and the man was quite happy with what he was doing. He was very independent.”
Another resident added: “It’s absolutely awful – I feel terrible about it. Our neighbours are really upset, the man must have been freezing.
“If he had knocked on our door we may have been able to take him to the church. The vicar is so good there and the old one used to take homeless to the missionary in Birmingham.”
It is believed the man, in his sixties, had walked from Hopwood Services along the Alvechurch bypass and into the village.
Officers are not treating the man’s death as suspicious and are working to inform his next of kin. The exact cause of death is still to be determined and the man’s identity has not yet been released.