A pair of stray goats who have been giving emergency services the slip for days have now been captured.
The pair, who have been enjoying the sights of the Headland, were rounded up tonight.
Members of the public with a van blocked one end of St Cuthbert Street, while a police car blocked the other.
RSPCA officers arrived and were able to coax the pair into a horsebox.
The slippery goats had managed to evade capture despite a major operation involving eight RSPCA officers, PCSOs and council wardens following public reports of their whereabouts.
Animal welfare experts have spent days trying to rescue the stray goats, which had been spotted in both Hartlepool and East Durham.
A major operation was launched when the pair were spotted earlier today, which led to several officers from the RSPCA, joined by police and council staff, in a bid to catch them in Blackhall Colliery.
But, they managed to escape again, until being rounded up tonight.
The goats were described as ‘very agile’ and the RSPCA added that it had been a ‘very difficult rescue’ due to the terrain, amount of area the goats were covering and the size and speed of the animals.
RSPCA chief inspector Mark Gent said: “We got some information that the goats were next to a busy road, Coast Road, in Blackhall Colliery, so we went straight there to try to catch them.
“Eight RSPCA officers, PCSOs from the police and council wardens were all at the scene along with a horse box and pens but the goats – who are very agile – managed to escape."
But, thankfully, with the help of the public, the animals are now safe.
Mark said: "We’d like to say thank you to the public for keeping us informed on the goats’ movements and for keeping away from them.”
The horned animals had been giving rescuers the runaround for several days after appearing out of the blue on Tuesday.
It is not known where they came from but numerous efforts to catch them proved unsuccessful.
The animal charity had even been putting out food to try to lure them out and earlier said it was looking into the possibility of tranquilising them.
On Wednesday, Hartlepool Borough Council Public Protection staff and the RSPCA spent about two hours trying to catch the goats after they were spotted in Spion Kop cemetery, at Central Estate.
They moved on to the beach and headed up towards Crimdon. The search resumed on Thursday when officers spent all morning looking for them without any joy.
The RSPCA said the goats are large and seem to be healthy older animals, but were refusing to let anyone get close enough to them before making a run for it.
The public was warned to contact authorities and not to approach the pair due to their large horns.