SHOCKED residents have spoken following the discovery of the body of a dead man in a bus shelter near Alvechurch this morning (Wednesday).
When the Redditch Standard visited the scene on Redditch Road, we found the bus stop covered with a tarpaulin to hide the incident.
Distraught residents said they had seen the man standing at the shelter throughout the previous evening.
At about 7.15pm that night he is believed to have knocked on one of the houses and the occupiers gave him a glass water and assumed he went back to the shelter where it is understood he spent the night in near freezing conditions.
Two shaken residents told the Standard if he had knocked on their door instead they would have been able to help him and take him to the church.
They said: “It is an absolute tragedy and we just feel awful.
“I saw him there when I left to go to the church,” said one. “When I passed him at the bus stop I just thought he was another commuter
“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.”
They added that they often see people loitering in the bus shelter and on this occasion did not think it was anything out of the norm.
Other residents were still giving statements to the police at about 10am but 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.
Police closed off the road at about 8.10am when the man, believed to be in his 50s, was found in the pouring rain after he reportedly pleaded with homeowners for a place to stay on the night.
A crew from Redditch Fire Station aided police along with an ambulance but the man was sadly pronounced dead at the scene.