A COUPLE of pigeons caused the cancellation of a church service.

The two birds took sanctuary in St Mary Magdalene Church, Taunton, last weekend.

It is believed they may have been escaping from the peregrine falcons that nested on the church tower and produced young earlier this summer.

Efforts to frighten the pigeons off proved unsuccessful as they flew at a height down the nave before resting on the crossbars at ceiling level.

A church spokesman said: "The mess they had caused and the potential distraction meant we had to cancel last Sunday’s 10 am service."

Worshippers arriving for the service were redirected to St John the Evangelist Church across town.

The pigeons had had enough after three days and flew off to allow volunteers to fully clean the church carpets today.

The spokesman added: "We are back to normal and look forward to a full week of activities."