EVERYONE knows the value of red capes when it comes to keeping bulls at bay.

But an elderly woman used her light-coloured cardigan to ward off a cow as she and a friend walked through a Hampshire field.

The pensioner deployed the unlikely weapon after the pair were head-butted on land off Normandy Lane in Lymington.

They were enjoying a relaxing stroll in the sunshine when the animal attacked.

Wildlife photographer Charlie Stratton and his dog Lola were walking along the nearby seawall when the drama unfolded.

Mr Stratton, a frequent visitor to the New Forest, said the women appeared not to have noticed two calves in the middle of the field.

He added: “I was too far away to shout a warning.

“Although they were some distance from the calves, the cow obviously considered them a threat and head-butted them almost into the hedge.

“However, one of the women very valiantly removed her sweater from around her waist and fended off her attacker.”

The cow decided that discretion was the better part of valour and backed away, allowing the walkers to make their escape.