Heywood family warn others after ‘devastating’ caravan theft

Date published: 01 July 2020

A Heywood family are keen to warn other caravan owners after their £16,000 caravan was stolen from a local parking site.

Stolen on Tuesday 16 June, the family had only just relocated their caravan to Oakridge Farm in Heywood on the previous Sunday (14 June).

Not even at the new site for two days, Paula Stott, owner of the caravan, believes that the thieves were watching the site beforehand, waiting for a certain model to arrive.

Speaking on the loss of the 2017 plate Coachman Vision 570, Paula said: “The theft happened during the day from a secure site. The gate was broken into and the locks were cut off the van in broad daylight.

“Even though our caravan wasn’t the only one at the site, ours was the only one that was stolen, and they went to a real effort to get it. There is a phone controlled main gate which they smashed off then used a grinder to cut off the locks on our wheels and a £100 hitch lock off the tow bar. 

“We reported it to the police who said they are more than likely sophisticated thieves who operate in organised crime.

“Unfortunately, there were no witnesses, and nobody realised the gate was broken until 5pm and we left the site around 1pm. The owners of the site have been as helpful as they can be, but there is not much we can do.

“What has really devastated us is that it was only bought it in August 2019 just after we got married, using inheritance money from my mother who sadly died. We had it for less than a year and due to the lockdown we have hardly used it this year, so it was like brand new."

Paula continued: “My daughter is absolutely heartbroken. She turned five in March and a lot of her belongings were inside including brand new birthday presents and some small dolls that she has been collecting for over two years. We were also booked on holidays through the summer, one in only three weeks’ time and one with family friends and their children, and now my daughter cannot go.

“I don’t think publishing our story will necessarily get our van back, but hopefully it might make people in the local area who have vans be more vigilant and aware of these horrible people.

“I just can’t believe this has happened, but after researching I found that this does happen quite a lot.”

Greater Manchester Police have been contacted for comment.

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