Santa back at Swindon store after kidnap ordeal

Swindon Advertiser: Santa is reunited with shop supervisor Craig Harris at McColl’s in Old Town Buy this photo » Santa is reunited with shop supervisor Craig Harris at McColl’s in Old Town

POLICE have escorted Santa back to Old Town after he was kidnapped by a sneaky Grinch.

The jolly features of Father Christmas are now back greeting customers in McColl’s in Victoria Road after he was discovered trapped in a nearby house.

Last Sunday evening, a thief bundled the six-foot cardboard cut out of Old St Nick into the back of his car before screeching away.

Little did he know he had been captured on the store’s CCTV footage, and The Vic pub across the road had stepped in to save Santa.

Staff took down the licence plate number of the getaway car, and police traced the registration.

Dan Woodman, 27, supervisor at McColl’s, said they were overjoyed to see the bearded man reappear in their window.

“A member of staff was working on Thursday night when a couple of policemen walked through the door laughing,” said Dan.

“Santa was escorted back in. He was been found in someone’s front window, but he is back in a safe place now.

“It is good that he is back where he belongs. Everyone who has come in and asked us about it has had a bit of a laugh.

“People have been a great help, and I want to thank everyone who has shared this on Facebook and Twitter.

“We especially want to thank the staff at The Vic. If they did not get the licence plate they would not have had a place to start looking.

“Because the police had the registration details they were able to find the address, and it would have been hard to miss him looking out at you from someone’s house.

“The police had a good laugh about it. It was nice to hear when the PC rang up to talk to me about it he said it had made his day.

“Everyone has been talking about it, and we are going to try to save him for next year.”

The opportunistic thief had chosen his moment when staff at the store were not looking.

“On the day he was stolen I was in the security office,” said Dan. “Someone was serving, and there was this man over by the door. I thought he was talking to the server, but he started shuffling towards the door.

“As he slipped out I saw he had Santa under his arm. I asked the guy on the till if he had asked to take him, but he was oblivious. It all happened in a couple of seconds.”

Dan does not hold any grudges against the mystery man who tried to steal Christmas.

“We are not taking it too seriously, because a lot of people would do this sort of thing,” he said. “It’s like when people make off with random things they find on a night out, it’s pretty harmless.

“A lot of people would love to have Santa in their front window, and this guy did for a day or two. ”

Comments (7)

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8:38am Mon 16 Dec 13

Wiltshirereader says...

Great work that Santa was found and very good of the shop to take the incident in such good spirits!
Great work that Santa was found and very good of the shop to take the incident in such good spirits! Wiltshirereader

3:21pm Mon 16 Dec 13

faatmaan says...

perhaps this team of brilliant officers could now trace the missing wireless project money and those responsible for this loss ?
perhaps this team of brilliant officers could now trace the missing wireless project money and those responsible for this loss ? faatmaan

5:03pm Mon 16 Dec 13

BCDR99 says...

Is there anyone who doesn't think this a marketing stunt?
Is there anyone who doesn't think this a marketing stunt? BCDR99

6:24pm Mon 16 Dec 13

roberto5 says...

I would of returned him piece by piece for ransom money.
I would of returned him piece by piece for ransom money. roberto5

7:01pm Mon 16 Dec 13

Ringer says...

BCDR99 wrote:
Is there anyone who doesn't think this a marketing stunt?
Given that nobody seems to have been arrested for it, despite the thief's car registration being known and the display being found IN THEIR HOUSE, I think you may be correct.
[quote][p][bold]BCDR99[/bold] wrote: Is there anyone who doesn't think this a marketing stunt?[/p][/quote]Given that nobody seems to have been arrested for it, despite the thief's car registration being known and the display being found IN THEIR HOUSE, I think you may be correct. Ringer

10:00pm Mon 16 Dec 13

roberto5 says...

Ringer wrote:
BCDR99 wrote:
Is there anyone who doesn't think this a marketing stunt?
Given that nobody seems to have been arrested for it, despite the thief's car registration being known and the display being found IN THEIR HOUSE, I think you may be correct.
Would the Police actually arrest someone for taking that?!
[quote][p][bold]Ringer[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]BCDR99[/bold] wrote: Is there anyone who doesn't think this a marketing stunt?[/p][/quote]Given that nobody seems to have been arrested for it, despite the thief's car registration being known and the display being found IN THEIR HOUSE, I think you may be correct.[/p][/quote]Would the Police actually arrest someone for taking that?! roberto5

10:18pm Mon 16 Dec 13

Ellofolks says...

Great news. All present and accounted for.
Great news. All present and accounted for. Ellofolks

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