A tourist has been mocked by people in the seaside town he visited on holiday after asking a street food vendor how you drain a harbour.

The man, who is from Birmingham, said he was confused by the changing sea level in the coastal town of Paignton in Devon.

The incident emerged when the holidaymaker – who has not been named – took to the Facebook group Ultimate Spotted Paignton with a query.

The man said he was used to canals in his home city and was puzzled as to how the water drained from the Devon harbour.

He said he asked a local crab seller how it worked, but was told to ‘f off’.

His full Facebook post in the private group read:  ‘Plz help cuz Im not sure how it works.

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‘In birmingham right, buy me is a canal and its always full but if you need it empty theres a wheel you turn i brought my son to a beach on painten harbour which was full. Theres no wheel so how do you empty it?

‘The crab man told me to f off when I asked. Very rude i think Devon ppl are hostile to holiday makers [sic].’

Several people living in the holiday town were quick to offer advice but many others ridiculed the man’s question.

John Pleass wrote: ‘I would have told you to wait until the harbour master gave you the key.’

Mike King suggested: ‘The gulls drink it all, then you wait for the rain to fill it up again.’

While Paul Rodgers finally helped out with this, rather brutal, explanation: ‘We have tides not a wheel. What planet are you from dimwit. Did you not go to school?

‘Plus I believe you turn the wheel to fill or empty the locks not the canal.’

When questioned as to whether the post was a spoof, the page admin said that it was a genuine post, sent to him anonymously.

‘These people walk among us,’ he added.

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