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Tandem stolen from Leeds man who rides it with blind fiancee found thanks to online appeal

Jack Makepeace's boss asked fellow members of albaRosa cycling club to keep an eye out...

A stolen tandem bicycle that a man from Leeds rides with his fiancée, who is blind, has been recovered following an appeal on social media.

Jack Makepeace, 22, told the Yorkshire Evening Post that the bike was stolen from the home he and Charlotte Webber share in Morley.

“It was locked up in my garden and they had cut the locks off it,” he explained. “I think someone saw it and they’ve come back with an angle grinder.

“I didn’t hold out much hope of getting it back. I thought it would be out of Leeds.”

His boss Antony Henson appealed online to the 500 fellow members of Leeds-based albaRosa Cycling Club to look out for the tandem, posting a picture of it.

One member, Alex Easton, realised when he saw the post that he had seen the bike while he was riding on Dewsbury Road in Beeston.

He said: “I recognised the photo but didn’t realise where from. Then it struck me that on the way home the previous evening I had seen it. You don’t see many tandems.

Mr Easton added: “When somebody is using the tandem and it’s their only real access to cycling, it’s all the more important.”

Another member of the club, Simon Schofield said the recovery of the bike showed the community spirit of the city’s cyclists in tackling thieves.

“This is a fantastic example of the cycling community in Leeds working together to help each other, fight crime and try to do something about the terrible scourge of stolen bikes,” he said.

“Bike thieves might want to bear in mind that stolen bikes really get other cyclists quite annoyed and they spare no effort in trying to reunite them with their owners.”

He added: “It means there are 1,000 eyes in Leeds looking for every bike stolen.”

Mr Makepeace expressed his gratitude to the club members who helped him get the tandem back.

“I’d just like to say thank you to them all, especially Antony, Alex and David Coy,” said.

Earlier this week, we reported on how a bike stolen from a York man aged 94 who had built it up himself after buying the frame for £12 when he was demobilised from the Royal Air Force after World War II was recovered following an appeal on Facebook.

> Video: York man, 94, reunited with stolen bike

Simon joined as news editor in 2009 and is now the site’s community editor, acting as a link between the team producing the content and our readers. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, he has reported on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, the latest developments in the bike industry and the sport’s biggest races. Now back in London full-time after 15 years living in Oxford and Cambridge, he loves cycling along the Thames but misses having his former riding buddy, Elodie the miniature schnauzer, in the basket in front of him.

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DaveE128 | 8 years ago

I'm curious how someone spotting it on their commute led to it being recovered!

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