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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 has been news editor at since 2009, reporting on 10 editions and counting of pro cycling’s biggest races such as the Tour de France, stories on issues including infrastructure and campaigning, and interviewing some of the biggest names in cycling. A law and languages graduate, published translator and former retail analyst, his background has proved invaluable in reporting on issues as diverse as cycling-related court cases, anti-doping investigations, and the bike industry. He splits his time between London and Cambridge, and loves taking his miniature schnauzer Elodie on adventures in the basket of her Elephant Bike.

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