Hospi­tal vol­un­teer in plea for in­for­ma­tion af­ter bike stolen

Yorkshire Post - - FRONT PAGE -

A VOL­UN­TEER help­ing pa­tients com­ing for NHS ap­point­ments is fac­ing a £300 bill af­ter a thief stole his bi­cy­cle in broad day­light from the East Yorkshire hospi­tal where he works.

For al­most five years, David Walker, 66, in­set, has given up his Fri­day af­ter­noons to greet pa­tients ar­riv­ing at the main re­cep­tion at Cas­tle Hill Hospi­tal in Cot­ting­ham, Hull. How­ever, he walked out of the hospi­tal at the end of his shift to dis­cover his bike had been stolen from the cy­cle shel­ter out­side the main re­cep­tion, where it was chained up.

Mr Walker said: “I of­ten go into town on er­rands and I sup­pose I could un­der­stand if this had hap­pened in the mid­dle of town. But I couldn’t be­lieve that it would hap­pen out­side Cas­tle Hill Hospi­tal in the mid­dle of the day.” Mr Walker started vol­un­teer­ing for Hull and East Yorkshire Hos­pi­tals NHS Trust af­ter re­tir­ing from his job as a heavy goods me­chanic in April 2014. He cy­cled the 20-minute jour­ney from his home in An­laby to help out at the hospi­tal most Fri­days, ex­cept when bad weather forced him to catch the bus. He was dev­as­tated ear­lier this year when fel­low vol­un­teer and friend John Haines died of cancer, end­ing a dou­ble act which had en­ter­tained vis­i­tors, pa­tients and staff ar­riv­ing at the hospi­tal for years. Now, he is fac­ing the prospect of shelling out to re­place his black Trek 1000 hy­brid bike af­ter the thief cut through the se­cu­rity chain at­tach­ing it to the rail.

The hospi­tal has now launched an ap­peal to help trace the bike and the thief.

“I had walked out about 3.30pm and saw a moun­tain bike ly­ing on the ground,” Mr Walker said.

“I thought that was a bit odd and then I no­ticed my bike was gone.

“I couldn’t be­lieve that some­one would steal a bike from right out­side a hospi­tal.

“I’ve con­tacted the po­lice and I know the trust’s se­cu­rity staff is try­ing to see if there’s any CCTV footage.”

The theft took place on Fri­day, Au­gust 31, some­time be­tween 12 and 3.30pm out­side the main en­trance to Cas­tle Hill Hospi­tal.

Any­one with in­for­ma­tion, or who can help Mr Walker, should con­tact the trust’s com­mu­ni­ca­tions team on 01482 675556.

The hospi­tal Trust’s web­site says it cur­rently has over 320 vol­un­teers pro­vid­ing in­valu­able sup­port to pa­tients, staff and vis­i­tors.

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