JOKER Jake the Rake decided to test Arriva's safety policy after bosses said paint could not be taken on buses.

But Huddersfield's self-confessed "professional eccentric" wanted to take it a step further.

He got on a bus bound for Dewsbury - armed with a 3ft sword, a fake nail-bomb, a realistic-looking water pistol and a tiny can of modelling paint.

And he was not even challenged.

Arriva stood by one of their drivers' decisions to refuse to allow Barbara Bell, 60, of Navigation Road, Thornhill Lees, on a bus because she was carrying paint last month.

Jake, of Lindley Moor, said: "I thought it was so stupid of the bus company not to let her on the bus, so I got on to see if they stopped me.

"I had the sword strapped to my staff, so they could not really see that. But the nail- bomb and can of paint were in full view - and the driver never said a word.

"Stopping people carrying paint on buses is health and safety gone mad. What can you do with a can of paint?

"And it was emulsion, so it was not even flammable."

Jake, 66, said he wanted to stick up for ordinary folk and prove a point to Arriva.

"They can't check everyone's bag as they get on a bus. This proves it, as the driver did not even have time to notice I had a sword.

"I am just glad I did not get stopped by any police, as they might have had something more serious to say about the things I was carrying."

After Mrs Bell was asked to get off the bus in Dewsbury a spokesman for Arriva said paint, whether flammable or not, had been identified as a dangerous item to carry on a bus.

Phil Booker, Ariva's commercial director, said: "We would ask this gentleman to contact us with details of the date, time and service he travelled on so we can fully investigate."