Two golf clubs have thousands of pounds-worth of trophies stolen

Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir November 21, 2018 09:39

Two English golf clubs have both suffered raids in which trophies worth thousands of pounds were stolen within about 24 hours of each other.

There’s no suggestion that the two attacks are linked as they’re at the opposite ends of the country, but this indicates that gangs of criminals have independently come to the same decision that stealing trophies from golf clubs is worth the risk.

The news should be of concern to all UK golf clubs as there was a spate of trophy thefts throughout the UK between 2012 and 2014 – but it was thought that they had come to an end.

A Gloucestershire golf club has had ‘irreplaceable trophies’ worth over £20,000 stolen just days before its annual prize giving ceremony.

According to the Wilts and Gloucestershire Standard, three men took part in a raid at Cirencester Golf Club just after midnight one day this week.

The men stole at least 40 trophies and drove off in what is believed to be a stolen car.

Members of the club are ‘reeling’ according to the paper.

Club manager Richard Collishaw said that the thieves would probably sell the club’s prized possessions for scrap.

“They knew exactly what they wanted. There were about 40 or 50 trophies in there and we now have just three left,” he said.

“Some of the very old trophies go back 100 years. We can’t replace them.

“They will probably break them up and sell them for scrap.”

Richard said that it looked like the men got into the building via a fire exit, before smashing the trophy cabinet glass and stealing at least 40 of the club’s trophies, which were wrapped in a tablecloth.

They fled the scene after just a few minutes in a black Audi, police are understood to have missed the criminals by minutes and are currently examining CCTV footage from the club.

“Police told me that they think that the car may have been stolen,” Richard said.

“The trophies are kept in an upstairs room. They knew exactly where to go and had perhaps been in before.

“They are worth about £20,000, but we can’t replace them. In about 10 days time we have our trophy presentation night and we have just three trophies left. It is very sad.

“I’ve been here for 10 years and this is the fifth time we have been burgled. It is pretty depressing,” Richard added.

The newspaper added that a dog walker spotted a few discarded tankards in a nearby bush.

Another two golf clubs have their trophies stolen

The following night offenders entered Grange-over-Sands Golf Club in Cumbria’s clubhouse and stole all its trophies.

According to The Mail, the thieves gained entry into the clubhouse by removing a nearby coping stone from the course and after several attempts smashed their way through a pane of laminated glass in one of the patio doors.

Mr Munsie saw what was taken and said that some of the trophies were nearly a 100 years old.

“Next year is our centenary year and many of our trophies date back to our early years,” said club captain Sean Munsie.

“We were going to feature them as part of our celebration.

“This loss of our history is irreplaceable and therefore priceless.”

He added that the cost of replacing the trophies will take some time to calculate but it is expected to be in the region of £15,000 to £20,000.

“As you would expect all of our members are shocked at the damage caused by this mindless act and saddened by it all,” he said. “It will take us some time to fully assess the loss and decide how to replace the irreplaceable, but we will.”

The golf club is offering a substantial reward for the return of the trophies, adds the paper.

More than 20 UK golf clubs had their trophies stolen in raids between the summer of 2012 and the end of 2014, with the majority located in the south east of England. Silver trophies were particularly targeted as the value of silver has soared since the start of this century. Silver is, however, less than half as valuable today as it was seven years ago.

In 2012 a man was sentenced to 12 months in prison after stealing £20,000-worth of trophies from Bamburgh Castle Golf Club in Northumberland.


Alistair Dunsmuir
By Alistair Dunsmuir November 21, 2018 09:39
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