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Excuse me, you forgot your… bollard: The weirdest things left on public transport | UK News

Entering the largest lost property warehouse in Europe feels a bit like heading into a theme park maze – except instead of hedges, there are rows of metal shelves about 10ft high and full of, well, everything.

It’s vast, very grey, rather cold and, in truth, a little bit dull on the surface. Perhaps its operators had this in mind when they decided to fill the first section as you walk in with stuffed toys.

It sort of does the trick at brightening up the place, until you think about the children who are missing them.

Toys left behind on TfL's services
A bird's eye view of the office - one room of two

With around 200,000 items turning up every year – roughly 6,000 every week – it’s organised chaos at Transport for London’s (TfL) lost property office in West Ham, east London.

As you walk around the warehouse you see the seemingly endless shelves filled with backpacks, handbags, phones, umbrellas, skateboards, scooters, buggies, footballs – you name it.

It’s brimming with London life, but it’s all lost. And with just three months to claim what’s theirs, if owners aren’t quick they may run out of time.

Still, there’s fun to be had here. The staff showing me around have a spring in their step as they tell me about the painstaking amount of work that goes into logging and sorting up to 1,100 new items per day.

“There’s a real surprise factor. Every day is different,” says Diana Quaye, the lost property office’s manager. “The other day we had a bollard come in from the Tube… I was questioning that, but we’ve been assured that it was definitely from the Tube!”

A taxidermised fox. Who would ever want to leave this lovely fella behind?
Who would ever want to leave this lovely fella behind?

One public transport user left their prosthetic leg behind. TfL's lost property office

But it’s not just random junk. Some of these shelves hold seriously expensive stuff – Rolex watches, engagement and wedding rings and other expensive jewellery, the staff have seen it all. And much of it has never been claimed.

They have also found bags containing significant sums of cash, some as high as…

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This notice was published: 2023-12-24 04:30:00

By Sky News

Sky News is a British 24-hour information television channel, the first in Europe of its kind, launched on February 5, 1989 by the British Sky Broadcasting Company.

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