A COWLING man who drove dangerously through South Craven with rubber flying off a tyre and under the influence of drugs or alcohol has been sent to crown court for sentencing.

Mark Blackburn, 37, drove through a red light, on the wrong side of the road and with two flat tyres before smashing into a garden wall in Cross Hills, Skipton magistrates heard.

He was sent to Bradford Crown Court for sentencing after being told the level of dangerous driving had been so serious it warranted a greater punishment than the magistrates were able to give.

The court heard on Friday that witnesses reported hearing the sound of metal on tarmac and of oncoming cars swerving to get out of his way as he drove from Steeton to Cross Hills just before midday on March 25.

He eventually crashed his black Peugeot 307 into a wall in Keighley Road, where on getting out he was described as unsteady on his feet, dazed and apparently unconcerned about what he had done. One witness took his picture with the intention of passing it on to the police.

When police arrived, he attempted to headbutt one and had to be restrained with the help of other officers.

A roadside breath test failed and he was taken to Skipton Police Station on suspicion of drugs or drink driving. After agreeing to giving a blood sample for analysis, Blackburn pulled his arm away.

Prosecutor Caroline Midgley said it had been a prolonged case of dangerous driving, while under the influence of drugs or alcohol, and with little regard for the safety of others. There was also CCTV evidence of Blackburn filling up with fuel at Morrisons in Nelson at 7am on the same day.

Blackburn admitted driving dangerously, failing to provide a specimen for analysis, obstructing a police officer and driving otherwise in accordance with a licence.

In mitigation, Keith Blackwell said Blackburn had been concussed after hitting his head in the collision. He had been working a night shift and had returned home to Cowling where he lives with his parents, before heading off to Beechcliffe, Keighley, to see a friend.

Mr Blackburn said it was while he was driving from Keighley to Cross Hills that a tyre burst and he hit his head after colliding with a garden wall.

He was initially helpful with the officers, but became agitated after he was stopped from retrieving his phone, which had been in his car.

Mr Blackwell added that Blackburn was a "slow bleeder" and had pulled his arm away from the police surgeon trying to get a sample because he was in pain.

Blackburn, of Lingcrag Gardens, is due to be sentenced at Bradford Crown Court on September 12.