Brazen thieves have been caught on camera pilfering plants, raiding planters and stealing trees.
A man and a women stole a plum tree from a garden on Grange Road and then walked off with it down Thirsk Road and on to Whitehorse Lane where they were captured (LEFT) on camera at 7.30am on April 18.
The owners of the tree put this note on their door appealing for its return writing: “It was a gift to our daughter when she was born”.
The woman thief is similar in appearance to a trio who came equipped with their own pots to scoop up shrubs from front gardens.
The, man and two women, were captured on CCTV on Luna Road where they stole plants from a planter leaving behind a trail of soil as they headed off down the road towards Milner Road where the trail went cold.
They are unfazed by security lights flagging up their activities at 1.25am on Sunday(April 26) and the footage shows they had already bagged two plants from further up the road.
Two of their number are carrying shrubs and third has an empty pot ready to use to steal the Luna Road plants.
Wooden community planters, part of a scheme set up by the THCAT (Thornton Heath Community Action Team) to spruce up street corners and deter fly tippers, are also being targeted by the plant pilferers.
Michael Daniels who spotted the Grange Road appeal sign while walking his dog, asked for help on Facebook locating the missing plum tree for the owners. He was inundated with offers of plants to replace the stolen tree including this planter made and donated by Graham Mitchell. Graham and Michael have been responsible for the roll out of many of the planters around Thornton Heath. Michael fixed and planted up the planter with the assistance of his daughter who are pictured (left) with the grateful family.
There have been a series of other plant thefts in recent weeks with another THCAT planter targeted on Buller Road and plants stolen from outside homes in Norfolk Road. The THCAT planters are looked after by guardians, local residents, who ensure they are kept fresh and watered – paying for the planters to be kept topped up.
One guardian warned on Facebook: “I can’t believe that even during times like these it is still deemed acceptable to steal!
“We have had so many positive comments over the years about the planter and then you encounter this! It’s truly sad!”
Are you missing plants? Do you know who the thieves are? Contact Thornton Heath Safer Neighbourhood Team:
Report online: www.met.police.uk/ ring 10 1or anonymously: Crimestoppers 0800 555 111.