A Yavneh College pupil has apologised for “carelessness” after he was reported carrying a gun outside the school in Borehamwood on Thursday, which saw the police called.

The sixth-former was in fact bringing a toy gun from his car to the school for a drama production, but a resident reported it as a possible terror incident, saying she saw “a man swinging a silver gun”. Local media soon ran stories of a “Yavneh gunman”.

This week, the Year 13 student wrote a letter of apology, saying his actions were “thoughtless, especially when placed in the context of heightened security tensions that this country faces after the atrocities in Westminster”.

The boy’s letter was forwarded to all parents by headteacher Spencer Lewis, after the school issued a memo telling them it was a ‘false alarm.’

The boy’s letter read: “I would never intentionally cause panic, and the short walk from my car to Yavneh was not boisterous or crass. I simply sought to provide my friend with a toy gun for her drama production and would never have thought that the walk would cause such severe disruption or anxiety.”

He added: “I failed to recognise the intensity of the current circumstances and therefore profusely apologies [sic] for the inconvenience caused. I hope all parties are able to pardon my carelessness.”