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Home   Sheerness   News   Article

Owners David and Bridget Bancroft's joy as cacti stolen from Sheerness found

15 January 2014
by Lewis Dyson

Last week we reported how David and Bridget Bancroft had as many as 50 of the plants taken from the greenhouse at their home in Wheatsheaf Gardens, Sheerness, in November and December.

But they recently had a knock on the door from a mystery man who said he had found some of the cacti on a nearby canal bank and, after reading the story, wanted to reunite them with their owner.

David and Bridget Bancroft with their cacti

David and Bridget Bancroft with their cacti

How they came to be in that location remains a mystery.

A total of 13 have been returned, including one that measured nearly 8ft in height when it was stolen.

Mrs Bancroft, a care worker at Blackburn Lodge in Broadway, Sheerness, was grateful to have them back, but said: “Our big one is all damaged. It’s broken, battered and bruised.

“I don’t know what we are going to do with it. It’s about 6ft now instead of eight and you can see where there are lumps and bumps taken out of it.

Sheerness man David Bancroft was astounded after thieves twice stole cacti from his greenhouse

Sheerness man David Bancroft was astounded after thieves twice stole cacti from his greenhouse

“It’s nothing like it was but obviously we are hoping, if we look after it, hopefully it won’t die.”

“I don’t know what we are going to do with it. It’s about 6ft now instead of eight and you can see where there are lumps and bumps taken out of it" - Bridget Bancroft on her stolen cactus

The 56-year-old said the man who returned them, who gave his name as John, said he found the lot at the canal bank and he took them home. He had to use a sack barrow to move the biggest one.

Mrs Bancroft said she and her 62-year-old husband had laughed to themselves about the bizarre burglaries but she admitted she was actually “really upset” at the time.

The couple had spent five years building up their collection with their children and grandchildren buying them the plants as presents. The big cactus was a gift from a friend whose grandfather had owned it before he died.

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