MORE than 50 adults and children had a lucky escape today, Tuesday, when the coach taking them for a day out at the seaside overturned in a ditch on the M5.

The vehicle packed with families, including around 25 youngsters were on the trip organised by the charity, Action for Children when it left the road at Junction 13 at Stroud on the southbound carriageway just before 10am.

Two air ambulances, 10 ambulances and three fire engines attended the crash but only six people, including a child suffered non-life threatening injuries and were taken to hospital by road.

The 57-seater coach owned by Prospect Coaches is believed to have travelled from the Stourbridge area of the West Midlands and was heading towards Weston-Super-Mare.

Several passengers received minor injuries and the driver of the coach sufffered a back injury but was reported to be conscious at the scene.

“It appears the coach left the road and went onto the hard shoulder and struck a barrier and turned over,” said a police spokesman who described the crash as a 'serious incident but with walking injured.'

The southbound stretch of motorway between junction 13 and 14 was closed for nearly six hours while paramedics and fire crews attended.

Shaken passengers were taken to Waterend Farm in Dursley where rest centre and community safety teams from Stroud District Council were in attendance.

A spokemsman for South West Ambulance Service said: "There were six casualties, all with minor injuries.

"One child and five adults have been injured.

"The child was taken to Bristol Children's Hospital and the five adults have been taken to Southmead Hospital."

Traffic was congested from Junction12 on the B4008 towards Quedgeley and Hardwicke for several hours.

Witnesses or anyone with information about the incident are asked to call police on 101 quoting incident number 92 of 19 August.