RSPCA Deputy Chief Inspector Anthony Joynes was heading down the M56 for a day in the office yesterday when he heard on the traffic news a report that sheep were loose on the motorway and raced to the scene where he rounded them up in no time after they had caused several hours of traffic chaos on a major motorway.

Deputy chief inspector Joynes said: “I heard on the radio that there was an unusual cause of the congestion up ahead and drove down the hard shoulder until I came to it.

“Highway officers had been chasing two sheep up and down the carriageway between junctions 11 and 12 for nearly two hours without success.

“The temperature was climbing and I was worried that the sheep would collapse or jump the barrier into the oncoming traffic so I asked for the traffic on the other side of the carriageway to be halted as well.

“Within 15 minutes I had corralled one of the sheep using my vehicle and caught it and the other came quietly a few minutes later.

“It must have been an amusing sight for some of the rush hour commuters and I am very grateful for the assistance of the highways police in getting these sheep back to safety.

“We are now doing our best to track down their owner.”