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  • Tucked away in a wooded backroad in Kent in southeast England, is a club for model train

  • enthusiasts called The Gravesend Model Marine & Engineering Society - where, since 1953,

  • hobbyists meet to work on their mini locomotives.

  • And even though the trains are small, the work that goes into them is massive.

  • Most locos to actually build - it takes five to 10 years.

  • Some people have been on them even longer than that, 20-25 years.

  • And it's not only running them, you've got to maintain them and that takes quite a lot

  • of doing as well.

  • The club is open to the public on Sundays - hosting birthday parties, charity runs and

  • other events for children.

  • It's a great hobby to have because I think a lot of the youngsters that come up here

  • do appreciate what we do.

  • I've got grandchildren of me own and I know how much they enjoy it.

  • And over the years I have had three, four engines.

  • Unfortunatelydo you want me to talk about - sorry.

  • Do you want me to talk about the robbery or not?

  • On February 14 of 2019 the unthinkable happenedand the club would never be the same.

  • We just sat down to eat breakfast when I received a phone call from Derek, one of our members

  • who's a dog walker, who uses this pathway.

  • And he just said, Tricia, I'm sorry.

  • Tough to tell you, but we've been burgled.

  • As we came through the gates, the door to the clubhouse was off its hinges and laying

  • on the ground.

  • Both these containers were open, the debris inside where they just gone through everything

  • broken into the locks where the trains were.

  • In total four trains were stolen - two belonging to individual members and two owned by the

  • club itself.

  • The value of the goods was estimated at 25,000 pounds.

  • Letting people know what had happened, calling them up to tell them was probably the worst

  • thing I've ever had to do.

  • It was horrible.

  • There were tears.

  • They may be grown men, but there were tears on my side and theirs.

  • When I walked in here and realized that my engine had disappeared, I must admit at that

  • time I felt like packing up to be honest.

  • To have that year, that engine over 20 years and to maintain it and keep it running, it

  • was devastating really, be honest, absolutely devastated.

  • And my grandchildren - well my grandson especially, cause he loved it and it really upset the

  • young fella, it really did.

  • The second member whose train was stolen decided to leave the club.

  • He was too heartbroken to continue.

  • Others, like Tricia, focused their energy on investigating the crime.

  • We now know that the thieves had a van of some sort parked at the end of this farmer's

  • pathway at the edge of this field.

  • They walked down this pathway, cut the farmer’s fence, climbed over, which brought them to

  • the back of our containers.

  • On entering, they angle-grinded through all these hinges.

  • They did this with the same one here.

  • And the last container here is where our two club engines were stored.

  • The police believe there must've been about four of them, as the engines obviously are

  • really heavy and to lift them over that fence must have taken some strength.

  • The police were unable to uncover any additional clues, but that night, Tricia received a phone

  • call from a model railway shop in Hemel Hempstead - a town about 90 minutes from Kent by car.

  • A man was offering to sell some model trains from his van, but when asked about paperwork

  • - a requirement for all engines - the man drove off.

  • It was matter of seconds, he said, when his helper in his shop came out and said, you'll

  • never guess what, Gravesend Model Marine had four locos stolen.

  • He was gutted.

  • From there we've had no real leads at all.

  • What we're hoping more than anything is that these people will leave them somewhere because

  • they can't use them.

  • They can't get rid of them without the paperwork.

  • Theyre nothing as scrap.

  • And to the members, it would be lovely if they were found in a ditch somewhere or a

  • field anywhere - even if theyre damaged.

  • We've got the facilities where we can repair them.

  • The members were quiet for a few weeks.

  • Gradually we were lifted by the community around us who decided to do Just Giving page

  • for us and raise money.

  • Donations to the club totaled over 5,000 pounds - mostly from small contributions by friends,

  • community members, other clubs, and complete strangers.

  • The frowns, the tears gradually turned to smiles again.

  • We had such support from the community, a lot of us couldn't believe it because we just

  • saw it as a love of our own.

  • It was like a hobby that just keeps us busy.

  • But when we saw the support from the public, it was just brilliant.

  • We have bounced back very well actually.

  • Well, I went out and one of our club members - he happened to have a loco for sale.

  • I said to him, look, if you want to sell one of your engines, I’d be quite happy to pay

  • for - to buy one off you.

  • I feel a bit sorry for him really because the loco he’s given me is better than the

  • one he’s got.

  • I should think it’s quite funny actually.

  • The culprits are still at large, but the club is as strong as ever - chugging right along

  • with a newly completed expansion of their track.

  • These people will not stop us because we love what we do and that's the truth.

  • And if you enjoy what youre doing, there’s nothing better than that.

  • And I think that says it all really.

Tucked away in a wooded backroad in Kent in southeast England, is a club for model train

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A2 初級

鉄道模型の大泥棒 (The Great Model Train Robbery)

  • 5 1
    林宜悉 に公開 2021 年 01 月 14 日
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