A 20-year-old motorist who collided with a parked car in Gretna was quite frank when confronted by police and said: “I’ve been a clown ….this was just stupidity.”

For a court heard that Alexander Smith, a serving soldier, had driven into the township to see a friend after having had a couple of drinks.

And at Dumfries Sheriff Court, Smith, of Sydney Road, Eastriggs, admitted driving with just over double the permitted drinks limit and driving carelessly and colliding with the car in Empire Way in Gretna last month.

Fiscal depute Lyndsay Hunter told the court that when the car was seen colliding with the parked vehicle a witness had told the owner and he saw Smith still in his vehicle and appearing under the influence and police were called.

Solicitor Dominic Kearney said that Smith had spent the day cleaning the car and had a couple of drinks and thought he would be alright to drive.

He added that whatever happened in court, Smith would still face disciplinary proceedings in his unit.

Sheriff Kenneth Robb imposed fines totalling £550 and banned the soldier from driving for 12 months.