Stolen: bizarre list of Council property items that have gone missing

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Chainsaws, school PE kits and 100 litres of fuel were among the bizarre items stolen from Sheffield Council property in the past two years.

Data obtained through The Star’s Your Right To Know campaign has revealed a vast array of objects pilfered by thieves from council offices, depots and even schools – worth thousands of pounds.

Green-fingered burglars have taken a raft of expensive gardening equipment from buildings – including four chainsaws from a depot in Shiregreen, two lawnmowers in Beighton and 11 leaf blowers from around the city.

The council installed more CCTV, removed equipment to other depots and repaired roofs after the incidents.

Elsewhere doors, windscreen wipers and 100 litres of fuel were stolen from council vehicles.

At the 13 schools targeted, burglars have broken in to take mainly electronic equipment such as laptops or computers.

But bicycles were taken, play equipment and pupils’ PE kits – as well as tools, tablets and laptops – from one primary school.

Money was taken from a safe at one school and at another secondary, thieves got on to the roof and forced a window open to take netbooks and laptops.

Slates, tiles or lead were also stolen from other primary schools.

Meanwhile, 36 mobile phones, and one laptop, have been reported as missing by council staff.

Most of them were in 2014 and the majority of them were reported as lost rather than stolen.

One Blackberry phone was stolen from a vehicle and another was lost in London.

The council says that all ‘city council laptops, memory sticks and BlackBerrys are encrypted to ensure information is protected in the event that a device is lost or stolen’.

The Freedom of Information request also showed what lost items from the public have been handed in to council buildings.

A projector was found at Howden House, as was a folder containing ‘confidential documents’ and an extension lead.

Four passports, a walking stick, hearing aid and sleeping bag were also found and handed over.

More usual items handed in included scores of phones, ID and bank cards, shopping bags, purses or wallets, cash, jewellery and clothes.

The council says any items of significant value found are reported to the police.

The council installed more CCTV, removed equipment and repaired roofs after the incidents.

Elsewhere doors, windscreen wipers and 100 litres of fuel were stolen from council vehicles.

At the 13 schools targeted, burglars have broken in to take mainly electronic equipment like computers.

But bicycles were taken, play equipment and pupils’ PE kits – as well as tools, tablets and laptops – from one primary school.

Money was taken from a safe at one and at another, thieves got on to the roof and forced a window open to take netbooks and laptops.

Meanwhile, 36 mobile phones, and one laptop, have been reported as missing by council staff.

The majority of them were lost rather than stolen. One BlackBerry phone was stolen from a vehicle and another lost in London.

The council says that all ‘city council laptops, memory sticks and BlackBerrys are encrypted to ensure information is protected.’

The Freedom of Information request also showed what lost items from the public have been handed in to council buildings.

A projector was found at Howden House, as was a folder containing ‘confidential documents’ and an extension lead. Four passports, a walking stick, hearing aid and sleeping bag were also found.

A council spokesman said: “We take the theft of all council property seriously and report incidents to the police where necessary.

“We do all we can to ensure council property, whether in one of our council buildings or a school, is safe from theft or damage. But we will not be complacent and will continue to monitor this closely.

“We have had incidents where regrettably staff have lost items but it’s good to see so many things have been handed in to lost property.”