A CAT which survived a 40-mile-trip inside a car engine compartment is ‘lucky to be alive’.

Carol Blackburn, from Farnworth, was about to drop her daughter off at school yesterday when she received a call from one of her neighbours, informing her that her cat, three-year-old tabby Bowie, was 40 miles away in Colne.

It is thought that Bowie, who has two different-coloured eyes after his namesake David Bowie, climbed up the wheel arch of her neighbours’ white Skoda, before going on the unexpected trip.

Her neighbours were visiting Boundary Mill shopping outlet, at the end of the M65, and would have been travelling at around 70 miles per hour on the motorway.

Due to the plastic cover on the car’s engine, however, Bowie has escaped the ordeal with only a few burnt whiskers.

Carol, an assistant accountant, said: “I’d never heard of it happening before, but I googled it and there have been some cases where cats have been seriously injured by this.

“It could have been so much worse.

“I was so relieved to hear he was alright.”

She returned straight home from work to see him, while her neighbours made a U-turn and headed straight back to Farnworth to reunite Carol and Bowie.

Carol was "dead upset" thinking about how, if Bowie had fallen out of the bonnet on the journey, that he would have just went missing - and no-one would ever have been able to figure out his whereabouts.

She added: “When I arrived home, he was purring round my legs and then slept all day.”

“I feel so lucky that he has survived it and am getting him checked over soon by a vet.

“He has always been a mischievous cat who loves the outdoors, with neighbours often sending me photos of him in their homes - but this is something I would never expect to happen.”

A similar incident happened in Brighton in June 2019, where a one-year old tabby cat sustained serious injuries and required operations. Luckily for Bowie, though, it appears that all is well.