Steam enthusiast 'devastated' over theft of ride-on locomotive

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Steam enthusiast 'devastated' over theft of ride-on locomotive

Postby dutchman » Wed Oct 16, 2019 3:31 pm

Thieves broke into his secure garage to steal rare and expensive five inch gauge Black Pug locomotive

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A steam enthusiast has said he feels like his arm has been "chopped off" after thieves stole his ride-on steam locomotive just weeks after he bought it.

Martin Kipling, of Avon Dassett, had his door knocked by a neighbour early on Tuesday, October 9, to be told his garage door was open.

Thieves had smashed their way into the garage and taken his treasured locomotive along with other items such as a generator and a chainsaw.

It was the theft of the five inch gauge live steam 0-4-0 Black Pug locomotive - which Martin had saved for and bought for just under £2,000 less than six weeks earlier - which really hurt.

The working steam locomotive is capable of pulling two carriages with an adult riding along on the engine.

Martin said: " My neighbour knocked on my door at six in the morning to tell me my garage was open.

"I’d only had the locomotive for 39 days. I bought it off Ebay for £1,861, which was an absolute bargain.

"I had just started putting stuff on doing it up as I had plans to take it to events and displays. It’s quite rare and very distinctive.

"I’ve been around steam all my life - so trains have always been a hobby, something I’ve enjoyed being involved in. So when I retired recently I started taking it more seriously and that’s why I brought it.

"You work all your life for someone to come along and take it off you. I feel like someone has chopped my arm off - I just want it back."

Martin has been told by police someone has already tried selling the item at a shop in Alcester - around thirty miles away.

Shopkeepers declined the offer but told them he thought it was worth over £2,000. Martin is now concerned the thieves will struggle to sell it so will melt it down instead and sell as scrap metal.

He is offering a reward for safe return of the beloved locomotive.

He said: "I want to get it out there, across the country if possible, and let as many people as possible know it is missing so we can find it."

Martin is so desperate, he has offered a £200 reward for information leading to the locomotive's safe return.

Wife Lesley said: " He is absolutely devastated. He loved that little Pug and was delighted when he managed to get it.

"Having saved his pennies for a year or more to have it taken away by thoughtless uncaring people has really upset him. He just wants it back."

The locomotive is heavy and about 24 - 30 inches long. It is big enough to pull two carriages behind it, and for an adult to ride on.

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