POLICE are closing in on a hit-and-run driver who left a pregnant cow writhing in agony.

Officers investigating the incident are chasing new leads after the Daily Echo helped publicise their plea for help in catching the culprits.

Rewards totalling £1,500 have been offered for information leading to the conviction of the driver.

The cow, six-year-old Blackie, was on the Hill Top to Ipers Bridge road in the New Forest when she was hit by a fast-moving vehicle, thought to have been a dark grey BMW.

Blackie had to be humanely destroyed by one of the Agisters, who arrived about ten minutes after the collision.

The “horrific” accident was raised at the Court of Verderers in Lyndhurst.

Sue Westwood, clerk to the Verderers, referred to a statement issued earlier this month in which the organisation described the crash and urged anyone who knew the identity of the motorist to come forward.

She said: “We have received some information as a result and the police are actively following up some useful leads.

“But we could do with further information and would be pleased to hear from anyone who knows something that might lead us to the driver.”

As reported in the Daily Echo, Blackie was owned by New Forest commoner Len Mansbridge, of Blackfield. He is putting up a £500 reward for information leading to the conviction of the driver. This is on top of the £1,000 reward always offered by the Verderers for calls resulting in the prosecution of hit-and-run motorists.

Meanwhile, police are still trying to trace a driver who failed to stop after their vehicle killed a pregnant donkey near Bramshaw last month.

Miss Westwood said there was another hit-and-run at Brockenhurst last Saturday at 10.52pm.

She told the court: “A mare had her back broken at South Weirs and was humanely destroyed by one of the Agisters, Peter Rix. We believe the vehicle may have been a 4x4 or a van or larger vehicle.”