Page last updated at 12:02 GMT, Friday, 4 September 2009 13:02 UK

Paper columnist's mailbox 'shot'

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Paper columnist's mailbox 'shot'

Police are probing a possible firearms attack on the property of a London journalist who moved to rural Somerset and dubbed her neighbours "toothless".

Mail columnist Liz Jones dialled 999 at 1518 BST on Thursday following damage to a mailbox at the end of her drive.

Avon and Somerset police are looking into whether a shot was fired at the box in Brushford, near Dulverton.

BBC correspondent Nicola Pearson said Miss Jones had angered some locals by the way she has portrayed their area.

Teeth 'a bonus'

In one article for The Mail on Sunday, Miss Jones, 50, called her Exmoor home a "wilderness" and elderly residents "toothless".

And in another, single divorcee Miss Jones complained: ''I will never, ever meet a man here in the middle of a moor, where even to be in possession of your own teeth is a bonus.''

Residents in the small community claim the remarks made them appear ''cold, dirty, smelly and vicious''.

And her book The Exmoor Files, detailing her move from Islington in north London to west Somerset and published last month, did nothing to improve her popularity.

An Avon and Somerset Police spokesman said: ''The caller was reporting damage to a metal mailbox which was discovered earlier in the day.

"Police are currently investigating the incident.''



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