VIDEO: Doncaster boy’s toy gun confiscated by ‘over-zealous’ airport security staff

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A South Yorkshire boy’s yellow and orange toy gun was confiscated by airport security staff before he jetted off on holiday with his family.

Four-year-old James Hayward was en route to Lanzarote in Spain when he was given a body search and his £6 toy was taken.

His bemused dad, Phil, of Sprotbrough, Doncaster, said the security staff at East Midlands Airport were ‘over-zealous’.

The software engineer said: “We got through check-in OK but the queue for security at East Midlands was probably the busiest I had ever seen it, with a queue of an hour just to go through the metal detectors.

“James went through security after his mum and he got a body pat-down.

“They opened his bag up and he had his toy gun in there so they confiscated it because they said it looked like an illegal weapon.

Picture shows four year old James Hayward from Doncaster, who was devastated after airport security confiscated his toy gun at East Midlands airport. Pictured with a replacement gun that his dad bought. See Newsteam copy NTIGUN : A dad has slammed airport staff after his four-year-old son was frisked and had his plastic Nerf gun confiscated - because it was deemed a SECURITY RISK. Little James Hayward had arrived at East Midlands Airport with his parents, Phil, 44, and Hazel, 38, with his brightly coloured toy, which fires sponge darts, packed in his hand luggage. The family were planning to fly to Lanzarote and had been queuing for over an hour and a half early on the morning on March 31 when they reached the front of the security check line. But over-zealous security officers then took exception to James�"s harmless toy when it was picked up on the system�"s x-ray machines.

Picture shows four year old James Hayward from Doncaster, who was devastated after airport security confiscated his toy gun at East Midlands airport. Pictured with a replacement gun that his dad bought. See Newsteam copy NTIGUN : A dad has slammed airport staff after his four-year-old son was frisked and had his plastic Nerf gun confiscated - because it was deemed a SECURITY RISK. Little James Hayward had arrived at East Midlands Airport with his parents, Phil, 44, and Hazel, 38, with his brightly coloured toy, which fires sponge darts, packed in his hand luggage. The family were planning to fly to Lanzarote and had been queuing for over an hour and a half early on the morning on March 31 when they reached the front of the security check line. But over-zealous security officers then took exception to James�"s harmless toy when it was picked up on the system�"s x-ray machines.

“Fair enough they are thorough but it just seemed a bit ludicrous to take a plastic gun away from a four-year-old.

“It’s a bit over-zealous to confiscate an orange and yellow toy gun from a four-year-old and give him a pat-down as well.”

East Midlands Airport staff offered to post the toy back to the family’s home after it was confiscated on March 29.

A spokesman apologised for the inconvenience and said: “The safety and security of our passengers is our first priority and all regulations on security are set by the government.

Picture shows four year old James Hayward from Doncaster, who was devastated after airport security confiscated his toy gun at East Midlands airport. See Newsteam copy NTIGUN : A dad has slammed airport staff after his four-year-old son was frisked and had his plastic Nerf gun confiscated - because it was deemed a SECURITY RISK. Little James Hayward had arrived at East Midlands Airport with his parents, Phil, 44, and Hazel, 38, with his brightly coloured toy, which fires sponge darts, packed in his hand luggage. The family were planning to fly to Lanzarote and had been queuing for over an hour and a half early on the morning on March 31 when they reached the front of the security check line. But over-zealous security officers then took exception to James�"s harmless toy when it was picked up on the system�"s x-ray machines.

Picture shows four year old James Hayward from Doncaster, who was devastated after airport security confiscated his toy gun at East Midlands airport. See Newsteam copy NTIGUN : A dad has slammed airport staff after his four-year-old son was frisked and had his plastic Nerf gun confiscated - because it was deemed a SECURITY RISK. Little James Hayward had arrived at East Midlands Airport with his parents, Phil, 44, and Hazel, 38, with his brightly coloured toy, which fires sponge darts, packed in his hand luggage. The family were planning to fly to Lanzarote and had been queuing for over an hour and a half early on the morning on March 31 when they reached the front of the security check line. But over-zealous security officers then took exception to James�"s harmless toy when it was picked up on the system�"s x-ray machines.

“This regulation states that no items may be permitted through security that resemble a prohibited item.”

Phil bought Orchard Infant School pupil James a replacement toy from eBay when they got back from their trip.

Picture shows four year old James Hayward from Doncaster, who was devastated after airport security confiscated his toy gun at East Midlands airport. See Newsteam copy NTIGUN : A dad has slammed airport staff after his four-year-old son was frisked and had his plastic Nerf gun confiscated - because it was deemed a SECURITY RISK. Little James Hayward had arrived at East Midlands Airport with his parents, Phil, 44, and Hazel, 38, with his brightly coloured toy, which fires sponge darts, packed in his hand luggage. The family were planning to fly to Lanzarote and had been queuing for over an hour and a half early on the morning on March 31 when they reached the front of the security check line. But over-zealous security officers then took exception to James�"s harmless toy when it was picked up on the system�"s x-ray machines.

Picture shows four year old James Hayward from Doncaster, who was devastated after airport security confiscated his toy gun at East Midlands airport. See Newsteam copy NTIGUN : A dad has slammed airport staff after his four-year-old son was frisked and had his plastic Nerf gun confiscated - because it was deemed a SECURITY RISK. Little James Hayward had arrived at East Midlands Airport with his parents, Phil, 44, and Hazel, 38, with his brightly coloured toy, which fires sponge darts, packed in his hand luggage. The family were planning to fly to Lanzarote and had been queuing for over an hour and a half early on the morning on March 31 when they reached the front of the security check line. But over-zealous security officers then took exception to James�"s harmless toy when it was picked up on the system�"s x-ray machines.

James Hayward's Nerf gun. Picture by Phil Hayward

James Hayward's Nerf gun. Picture by Phil Hayward

James Hayward with his Nerf gun. Picture by Phil Hayward

James Hayward with his Nerf gun. Picture by Phil Hayward