A pensioner who took on a trio of thugs he caught trying to burgle his home has denied what he did was brave.

William Meadows came home at around 2pm on October 10 last year to find three burglars from Dartford, Eltham and Bromley about to try and make their escape after a botched raid.

The 80-year-old tried to block the bandits in by parking his Jaguar across one side of the narrow entrance to the drive of his five bedroom home in Wrotham.

The driver of the trio's Audi panicked and reversed at high speed into the house after which Junior Lungo, 24, leaped out and smashed the passenger side windscreen of Mr Meadows's car with a sledgehammer.

The grandfather-of-three told News Shopper: "My reaction was 'I'm not going to let you get away with this'.

"I was indignant rather than frightened and obviously my adrenaline was pumping a bit.

"I got out of my car and walked towards him but don't ask me what I was going to do.

"He looked frightened and was panicking."

Mr Meadows had been out buying bricks to be used in an extension to his house when got a call on his iPhone telling him his burglar alarm was going off.

He headed straight home to Pilgrim's Way and confronted the burglars, one of whom threw Mr Meadows's stolen laptop at him which cut his hand.

Gardener Lee Stewart-Titchener then arrived back at the house and after a shout from his employer, used his Ford Ranger pickup truck to block off the other side of the bottleneck at the bottom of the drive.

Trying to get past the two vehicles, the burglars drove up a bank and into some shrubbery but ended up slamming straight into a concealed blackthorn tree before two of them jumped out.

Mr Meadows said: "I wasn't going to turn my back on them but I wasn't going to confront them directly.

"They got into my car and forced it between Lee's and the hedge on the other side."

Luckily Mr Meadows had left his iPhone on the seat of the Jaguar and was able to track Lungo and accomplices Sanchez Williams, 26, and Billy Hudson, 27, to where they abandoned the car in Heath End Road, Bexley.

The trio were apprehended on a bus trying to escape through the emergency exit after a police car pulled in front of the vehicle and three officers got on.

Mr Meadows said: "I'm a little bit embarrassed to repeat what my family said.

"They all thought I was very brave but I'm not quite sure that is true.

"What they didn't do was think about how that guy with a sledgehammer could have been much more aggressive and we could have got into a bit more trouble.

"I'm not particularly well built or very tall. I think with life experience in the army and managing industry you get a little bit streetwise.

"That stood me in good stead."

The burglars managed only to take Mr Meadows's laptop and some of his wife Janice's costume jewellery and watches but the haul was left in the boot of their abandoned Audi.

On May 23 at Maidstone Crown Court Hudson, of Rochester Way, Eltham, and Williams, of Pike Close, Bromley, were each sentenced to five years and eight months behind bars for taking part in the raid.

Along with Lungo, of Bracton Lane, Dartford, they pleaded guilty to aggravated vehicle taking and admitted two counts of burglary committed on the same day at a property in The Street, Sevenoaks.

Lungo also pleaded guilty to assault causing actual bodily harm and damaging the victim's car and had his sentencing adjourned until later this month.

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